The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles, Chapter 21

The Mystery of Oneness

One of the greatest points of confusion as well as disagreement among students concerns the Course’s teachings on oneness. There are a number of interpretations that have surfaced about how oneness and non duality play out with God, the Trinity and the Sonship.

There is a fair amount of agreement that there is oneness in the true reality but disagreement as to how literally it manifests.

We discussed some of these points earlier but in this chapter we will explore the subject a little deeper.

The problem comes from the Course itself for the intent seems to be to place strong emphasis on oneness. In doing so some passages give the impression that there is not only union in heaven but a oneness with no parts, or any individual identities or choice.

Then other passages give other impressions interpreted as there being many types of beings in heaven, to heaven being a perfect version of earth.

The best authority on this subject is the Course itself so let us take a look at the whole context to see what it has to say.

The oneness of the life of the Son is the main point of disagreement but there is also the oneness of the Trinity to consider. Concerning them it is written:

“Father and Son and Holy Spirit are as One, as all your brothers join as one in truth. Christ and His Father never have been separate.” T-25.I.5

“The ego is legion, but the Holy Spirit is One… For reality is one with the Father and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” T-6.I.10

“Christ knows of no separation from His Father,” T-15.VIII.4

This oneness includes us as Sons: “God created you as one with Him.” T-13.VII.8

Concerning God as a whole it is written:

“there are no separate parts in what exists within God’s Mind. It is forever One, eternally united and at peace.” T-30.III.6

So concerning the Trinity, which includes us as Sons of God, we are told in these verses that we are “one,” there is “no separation.” And “no separate parts.”

If one takes these statements too literally he could wind up believing that God has no parts whatsoever and after our awakening and return to heaven there will no such thing as any individual life or choice for all there will be is one life. You as an individual entity will no longer exist. What is left of you will be God all alone with no one else with which to share anything. If there are no parts there is only the One all alone.

One can get this idea if he goes by a few isolated passages, but the Course as a whole des not support it. The first thing we need to clear up is what the Course means when it speaks of oneness.

It gives us a clue in the first passage we quoted. Here it is again:

“Father and Son and Holy Spirit are as One, as all your brothers join as one in truth. ” T-25.I.5

Here it tells us that oneness is created by joining “as one in truth. ”

This joining together of parts to maintain oneness is emphasized a number of times in the Course. Here is a good example:

“In the holy meeting place are joined the Father and His creations, and the creations of His Son with Them together. There is one link that joins Them all together, holding Them in the oneness out of which creation happens.” T-14.VIII.4

A key phrase is that “There is one link that joins Them all together.”

Then we have passages like this that seem to support oneness with no parts:

What is the same can not be different, and what is one can not have separate parts. T-25.I.7

Some will quote this and say, “See, in heaven there will be just one life with no parts.”

But notice that the verse does not say “no parts” but no “separate parts.” When the many parts of God’s creation are joined together into “one link” then they are no longer separate parts, but united parts of one life.

Think of a puzzle with the pieces separated in a box. You look at one piece and it is not joined to anything and only confusion would result by trying to see the whole picture from it. But then if one joins the pieces together he sees a completed picture. The pieces are no longer separated parts, but joined into a union that creates the one picture.

Similarly in heaven all lives are joined together so they are not separate but create the one life. If there are missing pieces the life of God itself is affected:

“God is lonely without His Sons, and they are lonely without Him.” T-2.III.5

The oneness of heaven can be manifest by a oneness through God’s teachers here on earth:

“God’s teachers appear to be many, for that is what is the world’s need. Yet being joined in one purpose, and one they share with God, how could they be separate from each other? What does it matter if they then appear in many forms? Their minds are one; their joining is complete. And God works through them now as one, for that is what they are.” M-12.2

These teachers are individual entities living on earth yet they are not separate from each other because they are joined together since “their minds are one.”

This joining or linking together through sharing the one mind of God is what the oneness of ACIM is all about. It is not telling us that God or the Son is all alone with no parts.

For one thing we are told that there are four categories of the parts of the One God in heaven.

The first is the creator who is called the Father. The second is the Son who was created by the Father.

I and my Father are one, but there are two parts to the statement in recognition that the Father is greater. T-1.II.4

We are told that the Son was “created only to create” T-14.I.4 and though the Father and Son are linked as one there is a difference in that “the Father is greater.”

Then we have a third entity called the Holy Spirit who was created to fill a need that neither the Father or Son could do:

“He came into being with the separation as a protection, inspiring the Atonement principle at the same time. Before that there was no need for healing, for no one was comfortless. ” T-5.I.5

Then we have the fourth major part of the one united life in heaven which are the angels:

“You (the Son) were created ABOVE the angels because your role involves creation as well as protection. You who are in the image of the Father need bow only to HIM, before whom I kneel with you.” UR T 1 B 30y

Whereas the Son was created to create, the Holy Spirit to atone, the angels were created to protect. Interestingly, the mission of the Son is said to be “above” that of the angels.

So the Course tells us that in heaven there are four categories of lives with four different purposes yet united as one, all sharing the same mind of God. They are not separate parts, but united parts joined together by the one mind.

The next point of confusion comes over the life of the Son. All students agree that the Course clearly tells us that the one Son of God is us, but that is as far as the unity goes. Because the Course says several times that God has only one Son they literally interpret this to mean that there are no parts and one entity who is the Son is all there is. In other words, when they awaken and find themselves in heaven they will discover that this whole world was a dream of the one Son with no parts. None of the people in the dream existed in any fashion.

It is amazing that this belief has gotten as much traction as it has since the Course gives us quite a few details of what it means by the “one Son.”

Here is just one example of many that could be cited:

“It should especially be noted that God has only one son. If all His creations are His Sons, every one must be an integral part of the whole Sonship. The Sonship in its Oneness transcends the sum of its parts. However, this is obscured as long as any of its parts is missing. That is why the conflict cannot ultimately be resolved until all the parts of the Sonship have returned.” T-2.VII.6

Notice that the word “part” is used four times in this short statement about the “one son.” Each individual, such as you and I, are “an integral part of the whole Sonship,” and if “any of its parts is missing” the transcendent oneness is “obscured.”

One of the best illustrations that there are parts or groups in the Sonship is the account of the initial separation as follows:

“The Atonement actually began long before the crucifixion. Many Souls offered their efforts on behalf of the separated ones, but they could not withstand the strength of the attack and had to be brought back. Angels came, too, but their protection did not suffice because the separated ones were not interested in peace.” UR T 2 B 43

Here is a description of the beginning of the journey of the Prodigal Son (or separation) and the interplay of three groups. The first were the Sons (a part of the Sonship) called the “separated ones” who began the journey into the world of dreams and illusion. These are the Prodigal Son in the parable.

The second was another group of Sons, or “many souls” who did not separate and tried to prevent the separation. These are represented in the parable by the faithful son who remained with the Father.

Not mentioned in the parable, but in the Course were angels who tried to help “but their protection did not suffice.”

Thus was oneness disturbed and heaven “shattered” for a time (See T-18.I.12)

This shattering caused this situation:

“The Sonship in its Oneness DOES transcend the sum of its parts. However, it loses this special state as long as any of its parts are missing. This is why the conflict cannot ultimately be resolved UNTIL all of the individual parts of the Sonship have returned. Only then, in the true sense, can the meaning of wholeness be understood.” UR T 2 E 52

This account clearly tells us that the Son consists of not just one part, but all the individual lives are a part with free will. We can use that will to unite with the One Life of God or we can create the illusion of going against it as happened in the separation.

A point of confusion and division occurs among students as they read certain passages that sound like we are in the midst of the separation and need to be saved, but then there are others that make it sound like we never left home, nothing has happened and nothing needs done. These two descriptions sound like they cannot both be true. Here is a passage that sheds some light.

“Therefore, it is the tiny part of yourself, the little thought that seems split off and separate, the Holy Spirit needs. The rest is fully in God’s keeping, and needs no guide… This is the little part you think you stole from Heaven. Give it back to Heaven.” T-18.IX.1

“Any part of the Sonship can believe in error or incompleteness if he so chooses.” T-2.VII.6

So the answer to the conundrum is that there are two parts to ourselves. The first is that “tiny part” of ourselves that split off. That is you as you seem to exist in a body in this world. Then there is the “rest (that) is fully in God’s keeping.” This is the real part of yourself that is still linked to the one life of the Sonship in heaven. This is sometimes called your “other self” as in this text:

“There is another vision and another Voice in which your freedom lies, awaiting but your choice. And if you place your faith in Them, you will perceive another self in you. This other self sees miracles as natural.” T-21.V.3

Concerning this “other self” it says:

“You are part of reality, which stands unchanged beyond the reach of your ego but within easy reach of spirit.” T-4.I.8

That little part of the Sonship that “you stole from Heaven” is “irreplaceable”:

“You are altogether irreplaceable in the Mind of God. No one else can fill your part in it, and while you leave your part of it empty your eternal place merely waits for your return.” T-9.VIII.10

Sounds like the part that is you is pretty important for “without you there would be an empty place in God’s Mind.” T-11.I.2-3

Another point that produces some confusion are the Course’s statements about the part and the whole such as this one:

“The idea of part-whole relationships has meaning only at the level of perception, where change is possible. Otherwise, there is no difference between the part and whole.” T-8.VIII.1

“The recognition of the part as whole, and of the whole in every part is perfectly natural, for it is the way God thinks, and what is natural to Him is natural to you. “T-16.II.3

Those who believe in no individual parts will say that this proves their point. ACIM talks about parts but the parts and the whole are the same meaning that the talk of parts is symbolic as there is only one life with no parts. There only seems like there is more than one part in our dream world. When we wake up there will be no parts.

Speaking of parts this thinking is another example where the whole rather than the part of the teaching needs to be considered. We have already given ample evidence from the Course itself that there are four major parts or divisions in heaven itself and that the Son has parts. When the Course speaks of the parts containing the whole it is not saying there are no parts, but describing the parts similar to how we would a hologram.

A hologram can appear as one image or be divided into many. When divided the parts contain the information of the whole so they can duplicate the image of the whole. It is interesting that the investigation into holograms was very elementary when ACIM was received and Helen Schucman

most likely had never heard of one, yet the Course talks about God and its parts as if they correspond to a hologram.

The Course also says this:

“The whole does define the part, but the part does not define the whole. “T-8.VIII.1

That is an amazing description of how the initial hologram relates to its parts. The whole affects all the parts but the part does not affect the whole. Change the image of the initial hologram and all the parts change, but anything you do to the part does not affect change to the whole.

ACIM tells us that God extends or expands His creations and all creation shares in the extension, but the part cannot create itself and affect the whole.

Students with a knowledge of holograms are therefore quite impressed with the correspondence in ACIM of God and Its creations with holographic science since the Course was written before the general public knew what a hologram was.

So, just as a hologram can have many parts with each part containing the whole so can the many extensions of the one Son do the same

There are, however, two ingredients of heaven that are one with no parts that link the Sons of God so all the parts function as one life. The first is the mind of God and the second is the Spirit.

ACIM tells us the Spirit is perfected so even the illusion of division with it is impossible. It is not even aware of our world but only has contact with us through the Holy Spirit which was created for that purpose.

The mind represents the creative function of God and He has shared it with us. With the separation the one mind had the illusion of being split into the higher and lower with the higher being linked to Spirit and the lower to the ego. But the split only happened in the illusion of the dream but all powers of the mind whether in or out of the dream come from the one mind.

You could compare Spirit and mind to space that contains our universe. When we send a rocket into space or observe stars in it through a telescope we do not speak of spaces plural but always space singular.

Why?

Because there is just one space, but that one contains everything, trillions of parts.

Similarly, the mind and Spirit from God are one, singular, yet Spirit contains everything and mind links everything.

You are a Son of God, a part in the divine space or Spirit of God, yet when in your right mind you are the life of the whole as if you are the whole.

We “are of one mind and spirit with Him. (God)” T-5.VII.3

The paramount fact that “God is love” (T-9.I.9) tells us that there are many parts to the one life we call God. For love to exist there has to be more than one. After all, we are told that “love is the same as union.” T-16.V.3 Union can only happen when there is more than one part.

To be united with His Sons is very important to God for it is written that “God is lonely without His Sons, and they are lonely without Him.” T-2.III.5

Because God is love He desires to be united with His Sons and for this reason seeks the end of the separation.

The very function of love tells us that many parts are involved:

“For it is the function of love to unite all things unto itself, and to hold all things together by extending its wholeness.” T-12.VIII.7

Love “holds the universe together in its meaning.” T-15.XI.6

This tells us that love is a power that can “hold all things together” and holds the actual “universe together.”

We can see that this teaching on love is true when we examine how it plays out in our lives. Think of a time that you fell in love. What was foremost in your mind? There was nothing you wanted more than to be with that person and be as close and intimate as possible.

Because God is love He desires to pull all of His Sons toward a great center where they all share their essence.

This could not happen if God were all alone. If this were the case love could not exist because there would be no sharing or union.

As it is we stand “before the altar to one God, one Father, one Creator and one Thought, we stand together as one Son of God. Not separate from Him Who is our Source; not distant from one brother who is part of our one Self.” W-pI.187.10

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,       Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE, Twenty HERE

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The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles, Chapter 20

Reason and the Mysteries

There is some division among ACIM students over the use of mind, logic and reason in pursuing the objectives of the Course. Some think we should just study it and accept what it seems to say without question, whereas others see many items that seem to warrant greater understanding and ask questions to seek more depth in the meaning.

Actually, this type of division is very natural and is found to some degree in every group and organization as one side represents mind and the other emotion and the heart. Those polarized in mind are full of questions and are always seeking greater understanding, whereas those centered in emotion just like to accept things at face value and move on.

We are all influenced by both emotion and mind, but each individual tends to settle in one direction or the other. The mature person will balance the two, but many focus so much on one side that they miss the benefits of the other.

For instance, some who are centered in emotion will love the Course teachings on love, peace and awakening, and dismiss the idea of using mind and reason to understand the mysteries and nuances of the Course.

The question then arises as to whether it is of value to pursue the Course using mind, asking questions and using reason to see beyond what is written in black and white.

I submit that the use of mind in succeeding at understanding the Course is invaluable and will speed the student toward eventual graduation from the it. The understanding of any true piece of the mystery of existence can only help the student, not hinder.

The use of mind and reason is accepted by the Course itself.

“What reason points to you can see, because the witnesses on its behalf are clear. Only the totally insane can disregard them, and you have gone past this. Reason is a means that serves the Holy Spirit’s purpose in its own right.” T-21.V.7

Reason takes us to the source of ideas:

“reason sees the source of an idea as what will make it either true or false.” T-22.II.5

Reason is an important attribute of the higher part of our minds that can aid in our journey back home:

“The part of mind where reason lies was dedicated, by your will in union with your Father’s, to the undoing of insanity. Here was the Holy Spirit’s purpose accepted and accomplished, both at once. Reason is alien to insanity, and those who use it have gained a means which cannot be applied to sin. Knowledge is far beyond attainment of any kind. But reason can serve to open doors you closed against it. T-21.V.9

Here it calls this higher mind our “other self.”

“Reason lies in the other self you have cut off from your awareness.” T-21.V.4

The ego fights against the power of reason:

“Consider what the ego wants defenses for. Always to justify what goes against the truth, flies in the face of reason and makes no sense.” T-22.V.2

The ego is “devoid of reason” and doesn’t ask questions related to it:

“How can the segment of the mind devoid of reason understand what reason is, or grasp the information it would give? All sorts of questions may arise in it, but if the basic question stems from reason, it will not ask it.” T-21.V.4

Reason is a key ingredient in the undoing of the ego:

“The introduction of reason into the ego’s thought system is the beginning of its undoing, for reason and the ego are contradictory. Nor is it possible for them to coexist in your awareness. For reason’s goal is to make plain, and therefore obvious. You can see reason. This is not a play on words… reason sees through errors,” T-22.III.1

The Course gives this advice:

“Listen to Him Who speaks with reason, and brings your reason into line with His.” T-21.VI.8

“Reason cannot see sin but can see errors, and leads to their correction. It does not value them, but their correction.” T-21.VI.1

“You do not leave insanity by going somewhere else. You leave it simply by accepting reason where madness was. Madness and reason see the same things, but it is certain that they look upon them differently.” T-21.VI.3

Overall, the Course tells us that we gain the ability to transcend the erroneous thinking of the ego and gain the ability of pure reason through the Holy Spirit, which links us with higher mind, for reason is a quality of the mind.

Unfortunately, many spiritual seekers dismiss the mind as something that needs to be ignored. Many teachers of meditation say that we should be “mindless” and follow the script of the ego mentioned in the Course:

“the ego believes that mind is dangerous, and that to make mindless is to heal. But to make mindless is impossible, since it would mean to make nothing out of what God created.” T-8.IX.6

They may have a point when talking about the lower mind used by the ego, but the higher or real Mind “never sleeps.”

“The mind is very powerful, and never loses its creative force. It never sleeps. Every instant it is creating. It is hard to recognize that thought and belief combine into a power surge that can literally move mountains.” T-2.VI.9

If we wish to correct the errors of separation and awaken to true reality, the mind is essential:

“It is essential to remember that only the mind can create, and that correction belongs at the thought level. ” T-2.V.1

So, how important is mind?

“If I did not think I would not exist, because life is thought.” W-pI.54.2

Then the ultimate mind is from God:

Father, Your Mind created all that is, Your Spirit entered into it, Your Love gave life to it.” W-pII.263.1

When we as humans use reason, mind and thought we become seekers and ask questions, yet many in the various spiritual traditions discourage such things. A popular Christian bumper sticker a while back read: “I found it!” This was a declaration that they had found the truth and there were no more questions and nothing more to seek.

Indeed, some religions excommunicate their members when they ask too many questions.

Since there is no organized body or authorized theology with ACIM, there is nothing to get expelled from, but there are times that seeking, reasoning and questioning does draw some criticism. Such a person is sometimes accused of being in the ego, insinuating that if he were not controlled by the ego he would not be delving into anything not accepted by the common thoughtform.

So let us look at the only real authority on the Course, which is the Course itself, and see what it says about the matter. Does it approve of seeking and asking questions?

First, it tells us who doesn’t approve – the ego:

“Its dictates, then, can be summed up simply as: “Seek and do not find.” This is the one promise the ego holds out to you, and the one promise it will keep.” T-12.IV.1

It repeats this idea several times. Here is one more:

“the ego’s basic doctrine, “Seek but do not find.” W-pI.71.4

The ego does not want you to seek and find because “The ego cannot afford to know anything.” T-7.VI.4

“true perception, a state of clarity which the ego, fearful of being judged truly, MUST avoid.” UR T 4 F 13

The Course is quite encouraging about asking questions and using the Holy Spirit to receive and verify answers:

“In all these diversionary tactics, however, the one question that is never asked by those who pursue them is, “What for?” This is the question that you must learn to ask in connection with everything” T-4.V.6 The ego does not know what a real question is, although it asks an endless number” T-8.IX.1A Voice(God) will answer every question you ask, and a vision will correct the perception of everything you see.” T-12.VIII.4

As far as seeking goes, the Course speaks very positively about it:

“To seek and not to find is hardly joyous. Is this the promise you would keep? The Holy Spirit offers you another promise, and one that will lead to joy. For His promise is always, “Seek and you will find,” and under His guidance you cannot be defeated. His is the journey to accomplishment, and the goal He sets before you He will give you.” T-12.IV.4

“It is impossible that anyone could seek it (the truth) truly, and would not succeed.” W-pI.107.6

It is not the Holy Spirit that discourages questions. Instead, the Course says this:

“The enemies of love do not want questions: With love as enemy must cruelty become a god, and gods demand that those who worship them obey their dictates and refuse to question them. Harsh punishment is meted out relentlessly to those who ask if the demands are sensible or even sane.” W-pI.170.6

It is recommended that we ask sincere and meaningful questions:

“A pseudo-question has no answer. It dictates the answer even as it asks… An honest question is a learning tool that asks for something that you do not know. It does not set conditions for response, but merely asks what the response should be. But no one in a conflict state is free to ask this question,” T-27.IV.5

“‘Seek and ye shall find’ does not mean that you should seek blindly and desperately for something you would not recognize. Meaningful seeking is consciously undertaken, consciously organized and consciously directed. The goal must be formulated clearly and kept in mind. Learning and wanting to learn are inseparable.” T-4.V.5.

“Perhaps there is another way to look at this. What can I lose by asking? Thus you now can ask a question that makes sense, and so the answer will make sense as well.” T-30.I.12

Many more positive references could be supplied, showing that ACIM approves of seeking and asking questions. Since this is the case, why would some discourage such things as being motivated by the ego?

There are several statements that seem to give ammunition to this idea. Here is one:

“The ego analyzes; the Holy Spirit accepts. The appreciation of wholeness comes only through acceptance.” T-11.V.13

From this some students conclude that seeking, asking questions and analysis are related to the ego and should be avoided. Instead, we should just go with the flow and accept.

But accept what?

One can accept truth as well as error, and we certainly do not want to be on the side of the ego accepting error as truth.

“the ego proceeds to the next step in its thought system: Error is real and truth is error.” T-11.V.14

Instead of taking the passage concerning analysis in isolation, we need to examine the rest of the text which reveals the big picture. It continues:

“for to analyze means to break down or to separate out. The attempt to understand totality by breaking it down is clearly the characteristically contradictory approach of the ego to everything. The ego believes that power, understanding and truth lie in separation, and to establish this belief it must attack. Unaware that the belief cannot be established, and obsessed with the conviction that separation is salvation, the ego attacks everything it perceives by breaking it into small, disconnected parts, without meaningful relationships and therefore without meaning. The ego will always substitute chaos for meaning, for if separation is salvation, harmony is threat.” T-11.V.13

Far from reinforcing the idea that we should just blindly accept and not use our minds, these important words inform us as to the deceptive tactics of the ego in creating chaos.

It is a master at creating chaos because “The ego’s logic is as impeccable as that of the Holy Spirit, because your mind has the means at its disposal to side with Heaven or earth, as it elects. But again, remember that both are in you. T-5.V.1

Yes, the ego is great at arguing, but it has a major flaw in its conclusions:

“You may have carried the ego’s reasoning to its logical conclusion, which is total confusion about everything.” T-7.X.1

Instead of telling us that all use of mind, analysis and questioning are wrong, the passage under consideration reveals the mystery behind the master tactic of the ego to create chaos and confusion so that the truth will not be realized. And what is this tactic?

It is “to analyze means to break down or to separate out.”

“But isn’t that a good approach?” one may ask. Sometimes you have to see the separate parts of a thing to understand the whole.

True but this has nothing to do with the ego’s reasoning. It doesn’t break down and analyze to find the truth but instead is “obsessed with the conviction that separation is salvation, the ego attacks everything it perceives by breaking it into small, disconnected parts, without meaningful relationships and therefore without meaning.” T-11.V.13

The sincere seeker of truth may brake the whole into its parts and put them together again to enrich the understanding, but not the ego. It breaks the whole into parts and keeps them in separation. Looking only at the separate parts creates chaos and confusion. The advantage of dealing with the parts is that the ego can substitute truth for error and direct the needed parts to proving error is truth.

Let us pick a controversial topic today, such as global warming/climate change and see how the ego deals with it. The first thing to realize is that the ego uses the same tactics on both sides of something controversial like this. It doesn’t care if you are on the right or the left. It only cares that you will not see the whole picture and support confusion.

When you see people arguing on either side of this issue do you ever see them attempting to paint a picture of the whole problem and a wholeness solution?

Rarely.

Instead, what we see are those breaking the argument down to selective parts and using the part as proof of the whole.

Here’s an example. In the summer there is a particularly hot spell in your part of the world, though temperatures may be quite normal in other parts. Those representing the ego will say this is proof that we are having global warming and we must act.

Then when winter comes and there is a cold spell, the other side will say, “Doesn’t look like the earth is warming to me.”

Another example:

We have a period where there are more serious hurricanes than normal. One side will proclaim they are due to global warming and must act.

Then we have a period where there are fewer hurricanes than normal and the other side will say this is proof there is no problem.

Arguing using only a piece of the whole will not give us the whole truth, but lead to error and confusion instead. The only way to get to the truth of this or any other controversy is to look at the whole picture with all of the parts put together. Only then can two see as one and be in alignment with the Holy Spirit which does see the whole.

The problem is that “The ability to see a logical outcome depends on the willingness to see it.” T-7.X.2 Too many are just not willing to see the whole rather than the isolated part that supports their bias.

We must remember that all things were created by the mind of God and we share that mind. To not use that mind with its powers of reason is to neglect who we are.

“Alone we can do nothing, but together our minds fuse into something whose power is far beyond the power of its separate parts. By not being separate, the Mind of God is established in ours and as ours. This Mind is invincible because it is undivided.” T-8.V.1

We’ll end this chapter with a passage that presents a wonderful ideal to which students can aspire:

“Yet I do want to share my mind with you because we are of one Mind, and that Mind is ours. See only this Mind everywhere, because only this is everywhere and in everything. It is everything because it encompasses all things within itself. Blessed are you who perceive only this, because you perceive only what is true.” T-7.V.10

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE,  Eighteen HERE, Nineteen HERE

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The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles, Chapter 19

The Mystery of Salvation

Some may wonder about the title of this chapter, thinking that the meaning of salvation is pretty cut and dry. We achieve salvation and go to heaven, right? That seems to be a Course teaching that is in harmony with orthodox Christianity with not a lot of mystery behind it.

As with many concepts presented in ACIM there is always more depth than meets the eye. Though it often uses the word as if speaking in a general sense one must examine the overall presentation to get a clear picture.

For starters ACIM makes this statement which runs quite contrary to the orthodox view:

“Your Self does not need salvation, but your mind needs to learn what salvation is. You are not saved from anything, but you are saved for glory. T-11.IV.1

To obtain salvation then one must be saved from something but the Course says we “are not saved from anything.” If this is so then why does it speak of salvation hundreds of times? If there is nothing to be saved from why even bring the subject up?

Actually, there is something to be saved from and that something is nothing, or perhaps we should say NO THING. Because we are saved from nothing the Course tells us we are not saved from anything.

This nothing the Course calls illusions or the dream within which we seem to find ourselves.

“What is there to be saved from except illusions? And what are all illusions except false ideas about myself?” W-pI.58.3

This illustrates just one of many examples where the reader needs to get a whole picture of what the Course is saying, especially where illusion and true reality are at play, for it often dismisses everything in the dream of separation as if it did not happen. But keep in mind that the comparison is to a dream and the correspondence is enlightening.

When you dream at night and then wake up you may say to yourself, “that was quite a dream, but it never happened.”

Yes it is true the dream did not happen in your waking reality, but that doesn’t mean it did not happen within the totality of reality. After all, you did actually have a dream and did have experiences within it. So, from another way of looking at it the dream did happen. Whether or not you discuss the dream as a real event depends on your reference point.

If the Course’s reference point is heaven then nothing happens anywhere in time and space. But if the reference point includes time and space then lots of things are happening.

So when the Course tells us that we “are not saved from anything.” It speaks from a reference point of eternity in heaven. But then when it turns around and speaks many times of things we need to be saved from it speaks from a reference that includes the dream of time and space.

This shifting in the Course of the reference point from eternity only to eternity plus time and space produces confusion in students and causes many to come up with some odd interpretations on various subjects.

Therefore, when reading about salvation, or any other subject, we must look at the context to see where the reference point lies. If it is heaven only then there is no need for salvation and such a concept is not needed; but if time and space are included then we have a situation where the Sons of God are trapped in the illusion of the dream state and definitely need to be saved. In this reference the Course asks:

“The question is always twofold; first, what is to be saved? And second, how can it be saved?” T-12.III.2

We have partially answered that question with the statement from the Course about the main thing with which salvation is concerned and that is illusion. (W-pI.58.3) We are caught up in the great dream and need to be awakened as noted by God Himself who the Course quotes as saying: “My children sleep and must be awakened.” T-6.V.1

The illusion is quite complex and there are many ingredients involved from which we must be saved before we can awaken. Overall there are four main things that ACIM tells us from which we need to be saved or delivered so awakening can happen.

The first and prime problem is that we must be saved from our false belief about ourselves. While in the illusion we see ourselves as powerless imperfect beings who are at the mercy of outer events which are often beyond our power with which to deal. The Son sees himself as “the victim of this ‘something else,’ a thing outside himself, for which he has no reason to be held responsible.” T-27.VII.1

To escape being a victim the student must begin to question who he is:

“There is no statement that the world is more afraid to hear than this: ‘I do not know the thing I am, and therefore do not know what I am doing, where I am, or how to look upon the world or on myself.’ Yet in this learning is salvation born. And What you are will tell you of Itself.” T-31.V.17

To this the Course adds: “Again, how simple is salvation! It is merely a statement of your true Identity.” W-pI.77.1 The student must realize: “I am not the victim of the world I see.” W-pI.31

The Course makes it clear that when our true identify is realized that we are not a victim but share in the very powers of our Father God.

God “created you out of Himself, but still within Him.” T-14.IV.4 You are to “accept your rightful place as co-creator of the universe.” W-pI.152.8 “all His extensions are like Him.” T-12.IV.6

Then we have this powerful statement concerning those who realize their true identity:

“There is now no limit on his power, because it is the power of God. So has his name become the Name of God, for he no longer sees himself as separate from Him. (God)” M-23.2

So we have all this power, but are asleep and under the illusion that we have no power. What are we to do to manifest our true self and salvation?

“Let us look closer at the whole illusion that what you made has power to enslave its maker. “ T-22.II.9

Thus the Course acknowledges that the illusion does appear to enslave us. Since our very salvation depends on us waking up to our true reality the question that needs to be addressed is what stands in our way. There are three main problems the seeker must solve. Let us examine them.

The Problem of Forgiveness

Perhaps the most discussed barrier between separated Sons of Gods and true reality deals with forgiveness.

The Course gives a somewhat different slant on forgiveness than does orthodox theology. In the standard teaching the one who forgives is seen as a person of superior virtue who overlooks the sins of an inferior person who usually doesn’t deserve it. They see Jesus on the cross as asking to forgive his persecutors but thinking they they really deserved to burn in hell.

Concerning this wrong-headed idea of forgiveness the Course speaks of the “better person” who “deigns to stoop to save a “baser” one from what he truly is. Forgiveness here rests on an attitude of gracious lordliness so far from love that arrogance could never be dislodged. Who can forgive and yet despise? And who can tell another he is steeped in sin, and yet perceive him as the Son of God? Who makes a slave to teach what freedom is? There is no union here, but only grief. This is not really mercy. This is death. … All forms forgiveness takes that do not lead away from anger, condemnation and comparisons of every kind are death.” S-2.II.2&8

“Unjustified forgiveness is attack. And this is all the world can ever give. It pardons “sinners” sometimes, but remains aware that they have sinned. And so they do not merit the forgiveness that it gives.” T-30.VI.3

Therefore, if Jesus had the ACIM attitude of forgiveness when on the cross he had no thoughts of comparing himself to his enemies and didn’t see himself as superior. He would not have been angry or had the spirit of condemnation at all where the standard believer trying to forgive may be thinking: “I’ll forgive you SOBs, but you don’t deserve it.”

To this attitude the Course asks: “Who can forgive and yet despise?”

The Course presents us with a radical standard for us to attain. It says:

“Forgiveness recognizes what you thought your brother did to you has not occurred. It does not pardon sins and make them real. It sees there was no sin. And in that view are all your sins forgiven.” W-pII.1.1

To this a skeptic may say: If a thief steals $100 from me then I am dealing with something that did happen. Aren’t I in denial if I say it did not?”

The answer is that you do not deny anything that has happened from your apparent past but the key is to see the past in the light of eternal reality. It says this:

“Fear is not of the present, but only of the past and future, which do not exist.” T-15.I.8

The Course tells us the present is the only time there is and the past only exists as a memory in our minds and is not real from a higher angle of vision.

In other words, if you got hit on the head and lost your memory then it would be as if the thief had never stolen the $100. For you the present would be all the time there is.

This is the state of mind with which forgiveness must be approached.

We do not deny that in the universe of time and space that we have all made mistakes but the disciple realizes that all such mistakes are in the past and only have reality if the mind decides to give it to them. Instead, the mind can dismiss the past and enter into the eternal Now where salvation leads us. No wonder the Course tells us

“Salvation and forgiveness are the same.” W-pI.99.1 “Forgiveness is release from all illusions.” T-24.III.1

“He will teach you to remember that forgiveness is not loss, but your salvation. And that in complete forgiveness, in which you recognize that there is nothing to forgive, you are absolved completely.” T-15.VIII.1

So this attitude of mind creates a tremendous benefit for the seeker. He or she is “absolved completely” and enters a state of innocence as well as “release from all illusions.”

Now some may say there are some offenses just too great to forgive. What if someone raped your sister or killed your parents. You couldn’t just dismiss such things could you?

It would be difficult but when the correct attitude of mind is attained it can be done as was demonstrated by Jesus. His spiritual brothers who were supposed to represent kindness and love crucified him. Where others would have cursed them with their dying breaths Jesus asked God to forgive them. He thus gave us an ultimate example to follow.

If the student can realize one important concept around forgiveness all will come into perspective and make universal forgiveness much easier. It is this: The greater the offense is the greater will be your opportunity to advance toward liberation. Forgiving the thief for stealing the $100 may be a challenge, but most could do it without suffering much sense of loss. On the other hand, forgiving something big like rape or murder takes a lot more presence of mind but offers a much greater opportunity for moving forward toward salvation or backward into greater illusion.

If one suffers a great offense and forgives as if it did not happen then he has demonstrated his invulnerability which the illusion normally hides. Thus the great offense offers a great opportunity.

On the other hand, if he suffers a great offense and allows it to consume him for the rest of his life he is demonstrating his own perceived vulnerability and enters deeper into the illusion making awakening more difficult than ever.

Therefore, while caught in the world of illusion the rule of thumb should be to see all offenses as past illusionary events that can be dismissed, as if they never happened.

I have found this “never happened” idea quite useful in my own life and when I treat offenses this way it removes their power to affect me in any negative way. It proves its validity by working out in harmlessness and peace through practical application in life.

The Course sums up the importance of forgiveness is this profound quote:

“Forgiveness is illusion that is answer to the rest… Forgiveness sweeps all other dreams away, and though it is itself a dream, it breeds no others. All illusions save this one must multiply a thousandfold. But this is where illusions end. Forgiveness is the end of dreams, because it is a dream of waking. It is not itself the truth. Yet does it point to where the truth must be, and gives direction with the certainty of God Himself. It is a dream in which the Son of God awakens to his Self and to his Father, knowing They are One.” W-pI.198.2-3

The Problem of Grievances

Let us recap where we are with salvation. To obtain salvation we must see through the world of illusion to understand who we really are as Sons of God, but before this can be realized we must forgive all things that could disturb our peace. Just as a lack of forgiveness stands in the way of realizing our true selves we have several obstacles standing in the way of complete forgiveness.

The first is quite obvious which is merely a lack of motivation to forgive on the part of the student. The best cure for this is to make a serious attempt to practice it and witness how much peace iis attained by it.

However, there are other problems that confront those who are sincerely attempting to live the spiritual life. A master hurdle that must be neutralized is any grievance the seeker has.

We are told in lesson 68 that “Love holds no grievances.” One could also say that forgiveness holds no grievance as well. Then there is this:

“For every grievance is a block to sight, and as it lifts you see the Son of God where he has always been.” W-pI.78.3

The Course tells us clearly that a key to forgiveness is to see the Son of God or Christ in our brothers: “Christ stands before you, each time you look upon your brother.” T-25.V.2 “For as you see the Son you see yourself.”S-2.I.3

The lifting of grievances is essential to forgiveness and remembering who we really are:

“It is as sure that those who hold grievances will suffer guilt, as it is certain that those who forgive will find peace. It is as sure that those who hold grievances will forget who they are, as it is certain that those who forgive will remember.” W-pI.68.3

The lifting of grievances is a key to releasing the light within us:

“your grievances are hiding the light of the world in you, everyone stands in darkness, and you beside him. But as the veil of your grievances is lifted, you are released with him.” W-pI.69.1

It is important to understand that grievances are a key ingredient to a counterfeit plan of salvation:

“The ego’s plan for salvation centers around holding grievances. It maintains that, if someone else spoke or acted differently, if some external circumstance or event were changed, you would be saved… Each grievance you hold is a declaration, and an assertion in which you believe, that says, ‘If this were different, I would be saved.’” W-pI.71.2

“Holding grievances is the opposite of God’s plan for salvation.” W-pI.71.10

“By holding grievances, I am therefore excluding my only hope of salvation from my awareness.” W-pI.86.3

Since a grievance is a powerful obstacle to forgiveness which in turn is a powerful obstacle to seeing our true reality it might be helpful to examine the problem more deeply. The Course makes this statement:

“Let me recognize the problem so it can be solved.” W-pI.79

Many do not understand grievances and do not even acknowledge they have them so the first step is to understand them and learn how to dispel them.

A grievance is basically a negative feeling harbored toward another individual for saying or doing something that is seen as offensive or hurtful. The one offended sees the cause of the grievance as being the fault of another and not himself. The supposed solution is for the other guy to humbly apologize for the offense and to promise not to do it again.

The problem is that many do not take the correct action to solve the problem, the desired apology never comes and the grievance remains as a festering wound that continues to grow in strength often to the point of causing physical illness.

Just declaring you forgive the one who offended often does nothing for a part of you still wants to hear the words “I am sorry” and just can’t let the grievance go. What do you do?

ACIM says, “communication is salvation.” T-15.VII.11 And indeed it is. The one suffering the hurt feelings must communicate with the offender. Taking this step is often very difficult and may require a determined act of will, but this is where the solution lies and it is quite simple.

The one offended must approach the offended and merely explain to him or her what he did or said to hurt his feelings. In the best case scenario may go something like this:

Bill: When you said ABC it really hurt my feelings. It made me feel like I was a crazy man.”

Ted: Sorry about that. I was just joking around and didn’t mean any harm. I don’t think you are crazy at all.

In cases like this where the communication was made and accepted the grievance disappears instantly., This is one of the Miracles mentioned in ACIM.

Probably about half the grievances we experience are caused by innocent remarks that are interpreted too seriously. But then there are others more difficult to resolve. In another situation maybe Ted did know what he was doing and wanted to hurt Bill’s feelings. What does Bill do then?

The answer is the same. Communicate.

Even though Ted was intentionally hurtful there is a good chance his heart will be softened if Bill communicates his feelings sincerely. But even if he refuses to apologize or work things out Bill will have a chance to get the grievance off his chest. After he has done all he can to resolve the matter, if he is willing, he can then legitimately forgive and let it go. If he does this the miracle of peace will be his. On the other hand, if Ted continues in the attack mode he will have the negativity of the original grievance rest upon him. It will be as if the dark cloud of grievance was moved from Bill to Ted through the wrong-mindedness of himself.

Fortunately though with sincere and honest communication most grievances can be resolved and both parties can benefit and obtain peace.

Conclusion: To dispel the grievance honestly communicate your feelings followed by forgiveness on your part. Then move on as if nothing has happened.

The Problem of Guilt

The final major obstacle to our salvation is guilt and its negative power over the human spirit cannot be overstated as it stops the progression of many in their tracks.

ACIM says this:

“Guilt is always in your mind, which has condemned itself.” T-13.IX.6

Notice that it doesn’t say that God, the Holy Spirit or even angels have condemned us, but guilt comes from our own minds which condemn ourselves.

Why in the world would we create so much pain and distress for ourselves as guilt is able to produce? It all boils down to seeing ourselves as having sinned and in need of punishment:

“You can hold on to the past only through guilt. For guilt establishes that you will be punished for what you have done,” T-13.I.8

So why would we condemn ourselves when God does not and “The innocence of God is the true state of the mind of His Son. In this state your mind knows God”? T-3.I.8.          

The Course itself answers this question:

“You will not make decisions by yourself whatever you decide. For they are made with idols or with God. And you ask help of anti-Christ or Christ, and which you choose will join with you and tell you what to do. “ T-30.I.14

So whether you see yourself as guilty or guiltless is determined by whether your decisions are made through the influence of idols or God, which is like saying the Christ or the anti-Christ.

Indeed, deception by these idols, representing the anti-Christ are the source of guilt:

“There never was a time an idol brought you anything except the ‘gift’ of guilt. Not one was bought except at cost of pain, nor was it ever paid by you alone.” T-30.V.10

Since the idols, representing anti-Christ in this world, are the source of guilt it then behooves us to understand exactly what an idol is and how it is able to accomplish such a nefarious deception.

An idol is basically a substitute for God. In Bible times people made idols, such as the golden calf, and bowed down and worshipped them. The Course tells us this act is a great error:

“A sick god must be an idol, made in the image of what its maker thinks he is.” T-10.III.4

The question to be considered now is how does an idol bring “the gift of guilt” as taught in the Course? Perhaps an understanding of this is a key to the elimination of this major obstacle.

The main thing that produces guilt is the creation by our minds of a feeling that we have offended God or “sinned” against Him. To the contrary the Course teaches that we are in a dream state and nothing we do here is real enough to offend God.

If guilt does not come from sinning against God then where does it come from?

It comes from sinning against an idol, a substitute for God.

And where do we find such substitutes?

They are everywhere. Many there are who get in line to be your idol or voice of God from without rather than the true God which is contacted within.

In a religion or spiritual group the voice of the outer god comes to you from your religious authorities, scriptures or books. If such an outer voice speaks for God and you accept it then a violation of the word is interpreted as a sin against God which is followed by guilt.

If this outer voice from an accepted idol tells you to not drink coffee, dance or go to certain movies and you violate the order your mind will see it as a sin and you will eel guilt.

Another person who does not see such commands as coming from God will feel no guilt whatsoever.

The difference is that one is being controlled by an idol and the other is not – at least in this area of living.

Idols, or substitutes for the true inner voice of God, are everywhere and few escape the guilt they produce. Idols are found in not only religious leaders, but parents, family members, political and many other groups. Even hardened atheists accept idols that nurture their guilt.

But here’s the strange thing and the hidden cause of much residual guilt. Even the text of the most holy and accurate words on earth can become an idol that substitutes for God and can create guilt. Yes, even the words in the Bible or A Course in Miracles can become an idol that leads the mind away from the true God to a false outer one.

The problem is that words themselves are an imperfect substitute for the perfect word that comes from the Inner Voice. The Course says:

“Words can be helpful, particularly for the beginner, in helping concentration and facilitating the exclusion, or at least the control, of extraneous thoughts. Let us not forget, however, that words are but symbols of symbols.” M-21.1

Then we have this from ACIM: “I have made every effort to use words that are almost impossible to distort, but it is always possible to twist symbols around if you wish.” T-3.I.3

So the greatest and purest words from the Bible, the Course or any sacred writing can be interpreted incorrectly and if the student accepts this error as infallible literal truth the may suffer guilt through the illusion produced.

This problem is obvious when we see that there are hundreds of religions who interpret the simple words of Jesus in the Bible hundreds of different ways. A Course in Miracles is very straightforward in what it attempts to say, but even here many students disagree with each other about its meaning. The truth is that taking in the black and white words as infallible words from Jesus or God creates a idol. To escape this control of an outer God the seeker must always rely on a connection with the inner God through the Holy Spirit as taught in the Course. Then the student can read any outer words and not be led into the trap of guilt. He will then be able to find more truth in the National Enquirer than one who is in illusion can find in the Bible.

To escape from guilt the seeker must first realize that the inner Voice never condemns, but the outer voice does. If he feels any guilt at all then this is a sign that he has been deluded into accepting the idol of an outer god who has falsely taken the place of the true inner One. What he must do next is to identify the outer God to whom he has given power to control him with guilt.

Sometimes this idol is obvious and other times it is not. If he is a member of an authoritarian religion then it is most likely that it is the religious authorities and teachers who have taught him how he is to feel guilty.

On the other hand, there are those who have tried to leave an orthodox religion behind and think they are free, but are not. The authoritative decrees still echo in their minds and have power to produce guilt.

The for some it is more subtle still. An infallible acceptance of scripture or even A Course in Miracles followed by distorted black and white interpretations can create a false God even out of the best of the world’s symbolic words. If the seeker gives the black and white words more authority than the Inner Voice or ignores the Inner in favor of the outer then the student will suffer guilt.

Accepting this in theory is not enough. The student must take action and identify the source of guilt and dismiss it. When guilt comes he can say to himself: “The true God does not condemn. Where then is this condemnation coming from? I will identify it and let it be as if it never was. I refuse to be deceived any longer.”

When the seeker truly finds the source of guilt, dismisses it, and commits to following the Holy Spirit within no matter what the outer voices seem to say then in that instant guilt will just evaporate and be no more. Never again will the pilgrim have to suffer from guilt.

To this some may ask if it is not necessary to have a certain amount of guilt. After all, do we not need a conscience to guide us on the right path?

This illusionary idea is a final hurdle that must be handled to neutralize guilt completely. Our true conscience does not condemn and has nothing to do with guilt. Guilt is produced by a supposed sin that is committed, but the word “sin” as was used in the days of Jesus was much different than how it is used to induce guilt today.

The word “sin” in the New Testament comes from the Greek word HAMARTANO which means “to miss the mark.” In other words, when the Greeks, 2000 years ago, shot at a target with an arrow and missed, they “sinned” (HAMARTANO) or missed the target. Is this how the word “sin” is used today? Verily no. When the religious person thinks of sin in our age, he generally thinks of being unclean and ridden with guilt.

When you shoot at a target and miss the bull’s eye, do you feel degraded and guilty to the extent that you feel paralyzed and even feel unworthy to shoot again? No, of course not. When you miss you may find it mildly irritating, but you generally can’t wait to have another try at it.

On the other hand, if the archer were to feel guilty he would not consider himself worthy to shoot again until he has paid some price for redemption.

We would laugh at any sportsman with this crazy idea yet that is how the ego manipulates us with guilt in our lives and most find it no laughing matter.

Guilt has been identified with sin by those who have sought to control the souls of men, but among the enlightened prophets it was not always so. To them sin was seen as a human error and salvation from sin is the path that leads to a correction of error. The prophets in times past did not seek to control through guilt, but sought to shift consciousness from error to perfection as they saw it.

The most prevalent sin today (using its true definition) is to be ensnared by guilt, for guilt is caused by, not your conscience, but by an error in human thinking.

It is indeed a great error to make a mistake and then condemn yourself through guilt to the extent that you become paralyzed and do nothing to fix the problem until you feel worthy again. When a mistake is made the seeker needs to jump right back in making an effort to correct himself.

Indeed, the idea of correction of error rather than sin is a threat to the ego:

“Any attempt to reinterpret sin as error is always indefensible to the ego. The idea of sin is wholly sacrosanct to its thought system, and quite unapproachable except with reverence and awe. It is the most “holy” concept in the ego’s system; lovely and powerful, wholly true, and necessarily protected with every defense at its disposal. For here lies its ‘best’ defense, which all the others serve. ” T-19.II.5

The diligent ACIM student will defy the ego and again see sin as mere error as was its interpretation in the days of Jesus.

Let us conclude then by itemizing the basic ingredients of salvation. First the Course makes salvation sound like the simplest thing in the world. All we need to do is recognize who we really are and act accordingly. Then there’s a big “but.” But there are three main roadblocks that take our vision away from our true reality. They must be mastered before this simple true vision can come. The student must forgive, let go of grievances and finally completely neutralize guilt and let it go back to the nothingness from whence it came.

When these steps are taken he is said to be saved from living in the illusion of who he is not rather than who he is.

Does this mean the journey is over and the seeker has entered heaven?

Not quite though it will seem like heaven by comparison as he has established a solid link with God through the Holy Spirit. But…

“Salvation stops just short of Heaven, for only perception needs salvation.” T-26.III.5

If salvation stops short of heaven then what is missing? Here is the answer:

Salvation is nothing more than “right-mindedness,” which is not the One-mindedness of the Holy Spirit, but which must be achieved before One-mindedness is restored.. T-4.II.10

So, salvation takes us to right-mindedness stopping short of the goal of one-mindedness which is the awareness that exists in eternity. The Course tells us what it means by right-mindedness:

“The term ‘right-mindedness’ is properly used as the correction for ‘wrong-mindedness,’ and applies to the state of mind that induces accurate perception.” T-3.IV.4

So we achieve salvation through accurate perception and the most important things to perceive accurately are forgiveness, grievances and guilt leading us to an understanding of who we are.

So, where does this salvation take us?

“How much do you want salvation? It will give you the real world, trembling with readiness to be given you.” T-17.II.7-8

“Salvation is a borderland (real world) where place and time and choice have meaning still, and yet it can be seen that they are temporary, out of place, and every choice has been already made.” T-26.III.3

So salvation is not the end of our journey but it does take us to the real world which is the final step before our final atonement and liberation.

“The real world still is but a dream. Except the figures have been changed. They are not seen as idols which betray. It is a dream in which no one is used to substitute for something else, nor interposed between the thoughts the mind conceives and what it sees.” T-29.IX.7

Arriving at the real world leads to the final step:

“When you perceive yourself without deceit, you will accept the real world in place of the false one you have made. And then your Father will lean down to you and take the last step for you, by raising you unto Himself.” T-11.VIII.15

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE, Eighteen HERE

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Gathering Audio, 2021

This entry is part 24 of 24 in the series Audios

JJ Presents the 12 Keys of Knowledge

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The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles, Chapter 18

 

 

The Mystery of Reincarnation

After I bought my first copy of A Course in Miracles back in 1980 and read the first few pages I realized that this was a revelation of intelligence that was beyond the reach of a regular mortal channel. I immediately became curious as to whether it said anything about reincarnation as this is a teaching I embraced that seems to separate the spiritual chaff from the wheat as far as recognition of truth goes. Since my copy had no index and I had no digital text to search I had to plow through quite a bit to find a reference to it. The word was not found in the two main volumes which are the text and the workbook. Finally, I did find a reference to it in the small teacher’s manual under a section entitled, “Is Reincarnation So?”

I was hoping for more enlightenment on this topic, but instead the Course presented it in such a way that it could be accepted by those believed in the principle, but would not offend those who did not. Then, after digesting what it said I saw that the author accepted reincarnation, but wanted to make sure the reach of the Course was extended to those who did not, as there are many sincere people who have not arrived at this belief. At one time I was one of those people.

Here I extracted the core of what it says about the subject in the one section that mentions reincarnation:

“In the ultimate sense, reincarnation is impossible. There is no past or future, and the idea of birth into a body has no meaning either once or many times. Reincarnation cannot, then, be true in any real sense. Our only question should be, ‘Is the concept helpful?’”

“It is certain, however, that the way to salvation can be found by those who believe in reincarnation and by those who do not.”

“For our purposes, it would not be helpful to take any definite stand on reincarnation.” M-24.1-3

As it does on many subjects ACIM approaches reincarnation from an eternal perspective. Concerning the world as a whole it says: “The world you see does not exist, because the place where you perceive it is not real.” T-28.V.7

Logically then if the world does not exist then reincarnation in the world would not exist either, even if we live a thousand or more lifetimes in time and space.

ACIM only accepts something as having a true existence if it is eternal and unchanging. It tells us that if a thing is not eternal and has a beginning and an end then it will wind up as being something in the past which does not exist:

“Fear is not of the present, but only of the past and future, which do not exist.” T-15.I.8

It is indeed an interesting observation that once an event is passed that it only seems real in our memories and without those memories it is as if the past does not exist but the present always does.

In each life most of us are born with no memory of previous lives and it as if we had no past – or the past does not exist.

Since past lives belong to the past and the Course tells us the past does not exist then reincarnation would be in that same category even though a past life may seem as real to us as memories of our parents when we were children.

The question the curious student may have is not whether events in this world have happened in time and space, but what has happened in time and space?

As far as ACIM goes all happenings in time and space are not real and a part of the dream. Even so, it is interesting to explore our history while we are here in the dream.

Who, for instance would not want to know how the Great Pyramid was made, who made it and its age. Or who killed JFK, a question Gary Renard asked in his book on ACIM. Then too, it would be interesting to uncover the truth about ancient civilizations like Atlantis, Lemuria and many other things.

Millions, or perhaps billions or trillions of years from now when the universe ends and the one united Son returns home these type of past events will be of no significance, but for now as we explore the illusion in the dream state many past events are of great interest to the majority.

Helen Schucman, the scribe for the Course put things in perspective:

“I saw my life represented by a golden line stretching infinitely backward and infinitely forward. There was a miniscule dip in the line which I recognized as standing for my present life. It was laughably tiny and barely noticeable.

“I clasped my hands in real delight.

“‘What can it possibly matter what happens in this little eye-blink of time?’ I asked myself, in happy amazement. ‘It seems too long and important while you’re in it, but in less than an instant it’s as if it never happened.’” From Journey Without Distance by Robert Skutch, Chapter Three

Compared to eternity one life or many lives would be insignificant by comparison.

It is interesting that Helen was reluctant to accept the concept of reincarnation, but her resistance finally wore down after she was given numerous dreams and visions of past lives.

Here is one more from Skutch’s book:

“Especially affecting to her was her experience at Qumran, the site of the discovery of the Dead Sea scrolls.

“As they approached the actual area where the scrolls had been found, Helen abruptly stopped, visibly shaken. She stared at the opening of the cave, and suddenly burst into tears. Although Bill and Louis tried desperately to comfort her, she was unable to speak for almost five minutes. When she finally regained her composure, she spoke so quietly that the others had to strain to hear her.

“This is the cave,” she said in a tremulous voice; “this is the cave where I saw the scroll that said ‘GOD IS’.” None of the others said a word; there was nothing to say.

“A short while later, as they were breathing in the historical atmosphere of the Dead Sea surroundings, Helen began musing half to herself. ‘You know,’ she said, ‘something’s wrong with the water level. It’s too low; it used to be much higher.’ Bill, who took none of Helen’s thoughts lightly, opened a guide book he had bought when they had arrived in Israel, and began thumbing through it.

“‘Very interesting, Helen,’ he remarked. ‘It says here that at the time of the Essenes, the water level of the Dead Sea was a good deal higher.’ Everyone was silent, and finally Helen, visibly moved, remarked quietly, ‘This is the holiest place on earth.’”

It is quite possible that she was recalling a life that was contemporary with Jesus. Wapnick’s book tells of a message from Jesus about what appears to be from that time period:

“Your earlier acute problem in writing things down came from a much earlier [i.e., in a past life] misuse of very great scribal abilities. These were turned to secret rather than shared advantage, depriving the ability of its miraculous potential, and diverting it to possession.”

This explained her reluctance to be a scribe in this life, but even though not perfect she was the best one for the job.

In addition, Wapnick’s biography says this:

“in many of his personal messages to Helen, Jesus referred to her other lifetimes, in addition to the references to Helen’s past life experiences that came to her during the summer that preceded the beginning of the Course.”

She also had several visions of past lives shared with Bill Thetford who assisted her during the transcription process. In one life. that appeared to be ancient Atlantis, she was a Priestess and he was an assistant similar to their work together with ACIM and in another she was a priestess again in what seemed to be ancient Egypt and was expected to kill Bill, but hesitated and was executed herself.

Wapnick came to this conclusion in the biography:

“We have already seen in her letters to Bill, dating from 1965, that Helen did most certainly believe in past lives and their helpfulness in explaining, at least on one level, certain contemporary problems or conflicts.”

That said, how about the text of ACIM itself? Outside of the one section that references the word “reincarnation” does it give any other clues as to its existence in time and space?

The answer is a solid yes, especially when you consider the passages that only make sense when reincarnation is factored in such as this one:

“Just as the separation occurred over millions of years, the Last Judgment will extend over a similarly long period, and perhaps an even longer one.” T-2.VIII.2

The original before editing said the time period was “many millions of years,” so it is obvious that the separation and the return covers a very long time period.

If the separation and the return covers millions or billions of years does it make sense that we who entered the dream would only spend a few decades immersed in it in a body? What would we be doing all those other millions of years?

Reincarnation is specifically mentioned and verified in the original UR text:

“Cayce’s whole approach put him in a real doublebind, from which he did not recover. When he spoke of a dream in which he saw his own rather immanent reincarnation, he was perfectly accurate.” UR T 3 C 29

The orthodox version also makes it pretty clear there is reincarnation for it says point blank that “rebirth is man’s inheritance.” M-11.1

Such is each life; a seeming interval from birth to death and on to life again, a repetition of an instant gone by long ago that cannot be relived. And all of time is but the mad belief that what is over is still here and now.” T-26.V.13

Thus we keep going through death and rebirth until we have lived in a thousand homes as stated here:

“We speak today for everyone who walks this world, for he is not at home. He goes uncertainly about in endless search, seeking in darkness what he cannot find; not recognizing what it is he seeks. A thousand homes he makes, yet none contents his restless mind.” W-pI.182.3

Indeed it would take quite a few lifetimes to live in a thousand homes.

Then we have this benefit students receive from the teachers of the Course:

“Their (teachers) function is to save time. Each one begins as a single light, but with the Call at its center it is a light that cannot be limited. And each one saves a thousand years of time as the world judges it.” M-1.2

This idea is repeated here:

“Today we try to bring reality still closer to your mind. Each time you practice, awareness is brought a little nearer at least; sometimes a thousand years or more are saved.” W-pI.97.3

“The miracle substitutes for learning that might have taken thousands of years.” T-1.II.6

Saving us a thousand years in time would certainly include more than one life of less than 100 years and the Course emphasizes that our progress is made through life, not death:

“Nothing is accomplished through death, because death is nothing. Everything is accomplished through life, and life is of the mind and in the mind.” T-6.V.A.1

The Course makes it clear that we must experience this world through rebirth until we accept the atonement:

“Nothing the world believes is true. It is a place whose purpose is to be a home where those who claim they do not know themselves can come to question what it is they are. And they will come again until the time Atonement is accepted” W-pI.139.6

Then after leaving the body at death we are again called forth:

“While those as yet unborn will hear the call we heard, and answer it when they have come to make their choice again.” W-pI.98.4

If the Jesus of A Course in Miracles affirms the teaching of reincarnation then you would think that the Jesus of the Bible would also. Many students and scholars think that the original scriptures had obvious references to reincarnation which were removed when the modern Bible was compiled. A famous church scholar and father, Origen, openly taught the doctrine of reincarnation and the pre-existence of souls. Interestingly Bill Thetford recounts Helen Schucman identifying him as this third century entity in a past life in his autobiography.

Fortunately though, some of Origen’s writings remain and censors were unable to scrub all subtle references to reincarnation out of the scriptures.

The most obvious one concerns Jesus’ comments about Elijah and John the Baptist.

In the days of Jesus many were looking forward to the fulfillment of the coming Messiah as well as Elijah who was supposed to come first to prepare the way.

The disciples of Jesus thought that he showed strong evidence that he was the messiah, but one thing seemed to be missing. The Old Testament prophesies said that Elijah would come first. From their viewpoint Elijah seemed to be missing from the equation. They referenced this prophecy:

“Behold, I will send you ELIJAH THE PROPHET before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord: And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” Malachi 4:5-6

They then asked Jesus that if he was the Messiah, “Why then do our teachers say that Elijah must come first?” Mat 17:10

He answered thus:

“I tell you that ELIJAH HAS ALREADY COME, and they failed to recognize him, and worked their will upon him; and in the same way the Son of Man is to suffer at their hands. Then the disciples understood that HE MEANT JOHN THE BAPTIST.” Matt. 17:10-13 New English

This is a powerful affirming statement from Jesus: “Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John…A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet. For this is he of whom it is written, Behold I send my messenger before my face, which shall prepare thy way before thee (This is a quote from Malachi near the prophesy of Elijah) Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven (Christ) is greater than he… For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. And if ye will receive it, THIS IS ELIJAH, which was for to come.” Matt. 11:7,9-11,13-14

Now we can see why Jesus called John the Baptist the greatest prophet. He was aware of his past lives. He was quite possibly other great prophets besides Elijah.

Jesus certainly attracted a lot of attention when he began his work and many people were speculating as to who he was. There were many who actually considered that he may have been one of the prophets born again. Jesus asked his disciples: “Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? And they said, some say that thou art John the Baptist: some Elijah, others Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.” Matt 16:13-14

Notice here that Jesus did not refute this belief in reincarnation, but merely accepted Peter’s answer that he was the Christ.

The apostles evidently believed in reincarnation at the time that they were current disciples of Jesus: “And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth. And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind?” John 9:1-2

We see here that the disciples thought that the man who was born blind may have had to suffer so because of a previous sin. In other words, they thought he may have committed sins in a previous lifetime that led to his present condition. Jesus pointed out that the man was a special case. He was not born blind because of sin, but so that the works of God should be manifest. In other words, the man came with a mission to glorify the works of Christ by the great miracle to his eyes. Jesus did not, however, say anything to indicate that the disciples belief in wrongful actions before birth was not a possibility.

Jesus gave us an interesting indication as to what was in store for his disciples. He said: “There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, and sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s, but HE SHALL RECEIVE AN HUNDREDFOLD IN THIS TIME, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the WORLD TO COME eternal life. And many that are first shall be last and the last first.” Mark 10:29-31

Here Jesus talks about two periods of existence. The first he calls “in this time” or the period of our mortal existence in the dream. The second he calls “the world to come”. In the world to come, or the heaven of ACIM, where we receive “eternal life”, but in this age or period of normal earth life if we accept the gospel we will receive “an hundred fold” of houses, at least a hundred brothers, a hundred sisters, a hundred mothers, a hundred children, and a hundred different lands or places where we will live. This prophecy cannot be literally fulfilled without reincarnation. On the other hand, Jesus knew that “in this time” or period of human existence we go through more than a hundred lifetimes, but eventually we would reach the eternal world at the end of reincarnation into time and space.

A point often overlooked in considering reincarnation is that all life and creation follow this principle of recycling. Just as rain falls to the earth, evaporates, and later falls as rain again even so the recycling process of reincarnation is universal in time and space.

The Course tells us that it is a part of a “universal course” of which there are many “other forms, all with the same outcome.” M-1.4

Many of the teachings from the East are in harmony with A Course in Miracles but just use a different vocabulary and phraseology. They not only teach the reincarnation of individuals, but of the earth of solar systems and the universe itself.. Some teach that the universe has incarnated many times and the beginning is beyond the reach of memory.

And what does the Course say about the separation where time and space first began?

“Time really, then, goes backward to an instant so ancient that it is beyond all memory, and past even the possibility of remembering. Yet because it is an instant that is relived again and again and still again, it seems to be now.” M-2.4

Remember that an “instant” as described with the Course can refer to many millions of years. Here we are told that this instant of the creation of the manifested universe is “relived” or reincarnated “again and again and still again.”

Perhaps the one Son of God with many parts to the whole has been dealing with the illusion much longer than appears from a casual study of ACIM.

Other traditions teach that the Son aspect creates a material universe on principles of illusion and manifests in it to learn and grow in intelligence. Then they return home to pralaya, or the heaven of ACIM. Then after a cycle of rest new Sons of God are manifest and the cycle is repeated giving new creations an opportunity to experience time and space, sunsets, birds singing and the playing of games. Some call this physical universe the “playground of the gods.”

However one wants to look at it one can be assured that Helen’s favorite, Shakespeare, spoke the truth when he wrote, “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE, Seventeen HERE

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McCall Gathering 2000, Part 6

McCall Gathering 2000, Part 6

We each have one unit of energy and it’s important that we not deny these lower units. As soon as there is denial all sorts of problems are created. Denial is shown in handwriting. It’s shown in what we call retracing. A healthy M has no overlapping or retracing of the lines in the strokes. We have retracing when the line goes down and follows itself right back up. A lot of people are taught to write this way. People who write very neatly often retrace.

Audience: What about looping on the M?

JJ: Looping shows imagination. It shows expansion or an idea or thought. Any looping in any letter shows this. Depending on where the looping shows up demonstrates where the expansion is. For instance, a loop on a D shows expansion of critical thought. When people who have a loop in their small D’s are criticized that thought will expand in their mind. They’ll remember it being worse than the criticism actually was; the bigger the loop in the D, the bigger that expansion of critical thoughts. When you notice loops in someone’s D’s you need to be careful of how to talk with them.

You have three zones in handwriting. The middle shows social activities, the lower shows how you react on the material plane and the upper showing the spiritual abstract. The top loop on the L shows expansion of thought on the abstract. A big loop could show too much expansion where the average loop shows just enough abstraction. If there is no loop that would show a person similar to Spock. What he sees is what he gets.

Handwriting is one of the easiest ways to spot suppression. One of the troubles is, as we evolve, we tend to think we’re beyond this. “I’m beyond feeling this.” We enter a relationship and one person is letting their energies flow out to another person which may not be reciprocated and leaves you feeling possessive and jealous. Then the thought comes to you, “I’m an evolved person. I’m just as evolved as the next person and evolved people don’t feel this. They don’t feel jealousy.”

So you sweep it under the rug. As you do this you also end up suppressing the feeling. A person makes you angry but you think, “I shouldn’t be angry. I should be above being angry. I’m more evolved than this. I choose not to be angry at this person.” It doesn’t matter what you choose in that regard if your solar plexus is affected. You have maybe 70-80% of that energy floating around in there, circulating. Now that energy has been disturbed and you’re telling that energy that it’s not really there.

This energy is composed of lower life forms. “You’re telling me I’m not here?” they say, “I’m telling you otherwise. I am here.”

You need to remember that your being is composed of millions of smaller life forms. These lives gather together to create larger lives. Our centers are our greatest life forms outside our composite selves.

So you tell your solar plexus center that it isn’t there and it makes it clear that it is there, and you’ll find this out. It keeps things in motion. You’re offended again and pretend you aren’t really offended. It happens a third time and this solar plexus center, looking at the entity, says, “I’ll show him!”

It begins circulating more and more and more and more until finally it has so much energy in circulation that when you’re offended for the tenth time the energy is so powerful that you cannot overlook it anymore. You now have to deal with it. It’s so powerful now that you over-react. Now people are thinking, “She’s usually so calm. What happened? Is she insane or what?” It’s because that vital energy has been circulating and getting so powerful that now it comes out as explosive.

We need to let the energy out as it comes. If a person offends you, communicate that offence to the person. There are three ways to do it. You can say, “I’m angry at the person therefore I’m going to throw something at him.” That’s one way to do it. You can say, “I’m angry at the person but I shouldn’t be angry therefore I’ll deny it.” The third way is to say, “I’m angry at the person so I’m going to communicate it. Example: “When you said that, it made me feel angry.”

If you follow the third path the solar plexus center is happy because it’s been acknowledged. The feelings are really there and under control now. You feel better and the other person has to deal with that negativity now. He has to either deal with it or let it pass on through him. If he acts incorrectly then he will need to deal with that energy. But if they both are forgiving and by the power of forgiveness let the energy dissipate then no feelings are hurt and all will be well.

So, two people with romantic energy have one unit. To keep that one unit within themselves they need to keep balance of the lower centers. The lower centers are extremely important because they are the energy of our lower world and our personality worlds are important. They are the first steps of the ladder that take us to the spiritual world. If we aren’t taking care of the lower parts of ourselves then the higher parts of ourselves won’t open the door to let us in. If we don’t nurture and take care of and direct intelligently the lower parts of ourselves, which are actually composed of living entities that need nurtured, the door to the higher self will remain closed.

When we enter denial we find the door is closed, but because of our powerful egos, we’ll pretend the door is open. We’ll create our own little world, through the power of imagination, where we think the higher things are but the higher things won’t actually be there. We’ll think we’re there but we won’t be there. What we want is to get to the true reality.

Audience: JJ, what if we decide we don’t want to do that and prefer to live by ourselves?

JJ: If you’re not in a romantic relationship then there’s no problem with this type of energy. You’ve got one unit of romantic energy but it remains within yourself. There is only a problem when you begin a romantic relationship then all sorts of complexities enter in. Several people here are single so I’m glad you asked that. A lot of single people go in and out of relationships. I know several people here are headed in that direction right now. (laughter)

A lot of people are content being single. Maybe in your last life you consummated a relationship and decided you wanted to rest from relationships this life. That can happen. You might have decided to spend this life single. There is nothing wrong with that at all. There is nothing wrong with anything as long as you are following the direction your soul leads you. If you’re leading a single life and you’re comfortable and you feel that’s fine with your soul then you retain that one unit of romantic energy and it resides within you.

Audience: Couldn’t she also have her lower chakras open and still be passionate?

JJ: Yes, she can still be passionate. This has nothing to do with whether or not she’s passionate as far as how she uses her romantic energy.

Audience: So where is the romantic energy? Isn’t it in the sacral chakra?

JJ: It’s controlled by the solar plexus. You have 10 petals in the solar plexus. These different petals form what is called a lotus in the east. These unfold like lotuses. It’s like a flower unfolding. Each petal controls a different type of energy.

I don’t think the romantic energy is controlled by a petal so much as by the whole solar plexus as a unit. What you’re doing with the solar plexus when you’re having a relationship is that you’re radiating the romantic energy out from yourself to the other person. This other person, then, is radiating their solar plexus energy back into your center. So there is energy circulating between the two centers.

Audience: And if they don’t, that’s the energy that makes you unbalanced? If you send 70% and he sends 50% it leaves you unbalanced?

JJ: Yes, that’s 20% going off into space so you feel a vacuum because you aren’t receiving back what you’re sending. It leaves an emptiness. The more the imbalance increases the more emptiness is felt. In many ways a single person is in a good situation because they can be content with 100% of their solar plexus energy circulating within himself. It’s when the energy is pulled upon by another that restlessness begins.

Let’s say some guy moves in next door to a single content female. This guy is a totally dynamic person. He stimulates her like crazy and she says, “Wow, I never met a guy like this before.” All of a sudden it sucks some energy right out of her and the energy begins to circulate. Now she’s faced with a decision of letting more energy out and taking a chance. If she takes a chance she lets the energy circulate. If she hasn’t let any out in awhile it could be fairly scary. Maybe she’s led a very stable life and now tremendous instability is very possible. She would probably say, “I don’t know if I want this or not. This is a big decision.” For someone else who may have a new relationship every month it’s no big deal. (laughter)

First posted June 23, 2004. The Gathering took place June, 2000.

Copyright by J J Dewey

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The Mysteries of A Course in Miracles, Chapter 17

 

The Mystery of Relationships

My first read through the text of A Course in Miracles went pretty smoothly until about half way though when it started talking about the special relationship in quite a negative light.

In a nutshell, a special relationship, according to ACIM, is any relationship held by an individual where another person is seen as more special or the object of more love than anyone else. For most people the spouse, one’s children or good friends are seen as more special in their lives than strangers or various irritating people encountered in life. In fact most counselors and books on marriage advise one to make the partner feel special by going out of one’s way to do things for them that are not done to others.

It is kind of an accepted thing among humanity to go out of our way to make loved ones feel special. I’ve read a lot of spiritual related materials and hadn’t read of any teacher criticizing the special relationship. Many recommend seeing God, Christ or merely the good in all people and treating all with kindness and a giving heart even if they are obnoxious, but I hadn’t come across any tradition attacking the special relationship that would including marriage and children. Thus when I encountered the Course’s teachings on the special relationship I found that my open mindedness was put to the test. If it were not for seeing the high intelligence behind the author and the innovating teachings presented I might have discounted the whole thing. As it was, I read on and considered all with an open mind and discovered that when all the various teachings on this are put together in the bigger picture a path to happier relationships is revealed.

That said, let us look at what the Course actually says about the special relationship. Here is a quote that gives the flavor of its outlook:

“The special relationship is a strange and unnatural ego device for joining hell and Heaven, and making them indistinguishable. And the attempt to find the imagined ‘best’ of both worlds has merely led to fantasies of both, and to the inability to perceive either as it is. The special relationship is the triumph of this confusion. It is a kind of union from which union is excluded, and the basis for the attempt at union rests on exclusion.” T-16.V.6.

Basically this and other statements gives a good description of a bad marriage. “A strange and unnatural ego device for joining hell and Heaven” is particularly graphic and even a somewhat humorous description for one who has gone through a difficult relationship.

As I read on I found that the special relationship was not all bad and could be redeemed but before we go there let us present some of the reasons given by the Course why the special relationship can be a hindrance and then what can be done about it. According to the Course the big problem with the special relationship is that it is a substitute for God and His love.

“See in the special relationship nothing more than a meaningless attempt to raise other gods before Him” T-16.V.13

“In a sense, the special relationship was the ego’s answer to the creation of the Holy Spirit, Who was God’s Answer to the separation.” T-17.IV.4

So we are to look to God and His Holy Spirit for completion, but this can be frustrated if we put more special attention on another person than we do our true Source. As the Israelites molded the golden calf and made it more special than God we can also fall into the trap of placing special people in our lives above our link with God. In simple language the Course is telling us to put God first above any person or thing in this world.

The Course tells us we have separated ourselves from God and instead of seeking to return we seek through special relationship that which we left behind:

“Hear Him gladly, and learn of Him that you have need of no special relationships at all. You but seek in them what you have thrown away. And through them you will never learn the value of what you have cast aside, but still desire with all your heart.” T-15.VIII.2

“The real purpose of the special relationship, in strict accordance with the ego’s goals, is to destroy reality and substitute illusion.” T-16.V.9

The basic flaw in the special relationship is that it introduces inequality in love. Instead, we are supposed to be like God and love all other beings equally:

“You cannot enter into real relationships with any of God’s Sons unless you love them all and equally. Love is not special. If you single out part of the Sonship for your love, you are imposing guilt on all your relationships and making them unreal.” T-13.X.11

And thus we have guilt associated with the special relationship which seems to be a major reason for the negative descriptions of it.

“the closer you look at the special relationship, the more apparent it becomes that it must foster guilt and therefore must imprison.” T-16.VI.4.

“It is sure that those who select certain ones as partners in any aspect of living, and use them for any purpose which they would not share with others, are trying to live with guilt rather than die of it. This is the choice they see. And love, to them, is only an escape from death.” T-16.IV.4

Guilt seems to be just one of the negative effects of the special relationship:

“In looking at the special relationship, it is necessary first to realize that it involves a great amount of pain. Anxiety, despair, guilt and attack all enter into it, broken into by periods in which they seem to be gone. All these must be understood for what they are. Whatever form they take, they are always an attack on the self to make the other guilty.” T-16.V.1

When someone reads this he may wonder why the course speaks so negatively about guilt and other negative aspects belonging to the special relationship. After all, are there not a lot of people with positive and beneficial special relationships?

There are two key phrases in that last quote. The first is there are “periods in which they (the negativity) seem to be gone.”

Yes, many couples will have an enjoyable relationship for a few years and then all hell will break loose. They will either separate or continue together merely enduring each other.

The second key statement is: “Whatever form they take, they are always an attack on the self to make the other guilty.”

This is interesting. The major problems in the special relationship is not caused by attacking the mate but attacking oneself to evoke guilt in the other. How does this happen?

Lots of ways. Here are a few.

One partner says: “I do all the housework and what do you do.? You just sit around, watch TV and drink beer.”

This person attacked herself by making her a victim and then attempted to make her mate feel guilty.

In another instance a partner may say, “I slave away all day at a job I hate and you just sit around most of the day and can’t even get dinner ready on time.”

Again, he makes himself a victim and attempts to induce guilt.

These are stark examples but many play little games that portray themselves as subtle victims to make the partner feel some unease with guilt. One says in different ways, “I do this for you and what do I get in return?” These games play out even in relatively stable relationships.

Guilt is a major barrier between humanity and the realm of Spirit. Guilt must be understood and released before the Son of God can manifest and return home. This is why the special relationship is discouraged and viewed with such negativity.

The trouble is that all of us have special relationships of some kind. They may be with a spouse, one’s children, friends, a car, a home, a job – virtually anything that the person is strongly attached to and shows special attention.

So are we all doomed to stay in the illusion? It seems quite difficult to go through life without some sort of special relationship unless you are a yogi living in a cave.’

And aren’t there a few people with peaceful relationships free of guilt?

Fortunately the Course does offer deliverance from the special relationship composed of guilt and turbulence to one of peace. It calls us to make a transition from the special relationship, which it sometimes calls the unholy relationship, to the holy relationship.

To understand what is needed to heal our relationships we must understand the problem of limitation in the special relationship. The limitation is symbolized by the body: “The special relationship is a device for limiting your self to a body, and for limiting your perception of others to theirs.” T-16.VI.3

In the spiritual realm there is no separation. As Spirit you are merged and one with every other part of the life of God. This ultimate sharing is what the Course calls heaven. Unfortunately “the body cannot be used for purposes of union. If, then, you see your brother as a body, you have established a condition in which uniting with him becomes impossible.” T-19.I.4

So our life focus seems to be limited to a body, but in this limited condition we have an internal desire to reestablish that heavenly union that we once had. Communication and sex is the best we can do in this direction with bodies but all efforts fall short aptly described here:

“On this side of the bridge you see the world of separate bodies, seeking to join each other in separate unions and to become one by losing. When two individuals seek to become one, they are trying to decrease their magnitude. Each would deny his power, for the separate union excludes the universe. Far more is left outside than would be taken in, for God is left without and nothing taken in. If one such union were made in perfect faith, the universe would enter into it. Yet the special relationship the ego seeks does not include even one whole individual. The ego wants but part of him, and sees only this part and nothing else.” T-16.VI.5

This problem of separation caused by seeing ourselves in bodies is something of which many are completely unaware. They assume that the highest union to be achieved is through physical proximity and vocal communication. A few sense there is more but know not how to achieve it.

We are very limited in our unions in our special relationships so God has given us the Holy Spirit to assist us in removing them.

“Everyone on earth has formed special relationships, and although this is not so in Heaven, the Holy Spirit knows how to bring a touch of Heaven to them here. In the holy instant no one is special, for your personal needs intrude on no one to make your brothers seem different. Without the values from the past, you would see them all the same and like yourself. Nor would you see any separation between yourself and them. In the holy instant, you see in each relationship what it will be when you perceive only the present. God knows you now.” T-15.V.8

So it is the Holy Spirit’s job to bring a “touch of heaven” into our special relationships. Since oneness and unity is the outstanding feature of heaven then that would be what He would seek to bring here:

“It is the Holy Spirit’s function to teach you how this oneness is experienced, what you must do that it can be experienced, and where you should go to do it.” T-25.I.6

So when we follow our own wills while seeing ourselves separated through bodies we create special relationships. They seem to add to us, but in reality they diminish us. But when we call in the Holy Spirit, which links heaven and earth, we transcend the limitations off the body and share in the one mind that is from God. When this happens our vision is extended to the whole and the special relationship is turned into a “holy relationship.”

“Reason sees a holy relationship as what it is; a common state of mind, where both give errors gladly to correction, that both may happily be healed as one.” T-22.III.9

This “common state of mind” can never be achieved by those yielding to the ego. But The Holy Spirit is one with the Father and the Son and truth is seen correctly through its eyes. Two or more having the Holy Spirit in their relationship will “give errors gladly to correction” and all disagreements that occur in ego centered relationships just vanish. Disagreements will no longer exist. Furthermore, we are told this:

“This is the function of your holy relationship. For what one thinks, the other will experience with him. What can this mean except your mind and your brother’s are one?” T-22.VI.14

This describes a oneness few experience, but it is the goal set by the course and eventually will be achieved by all of us. Imagine being so closely linked to another that “what one thinks, the other will experience with him.”

Some have had this happen at high points in the relationship but later drift back into the ego and live in their separate condition.

Jesus gave the key to making this sharing a permanent condition:

“And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them, And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Matt 18:2-4

So, how is it that a little child is a key to entering the kingdom of heaven?

The child is humble and does not cling to the error of many preconceived notions. He is open to the idea that anything could be true. This is the outlook we must have to establish the holy relationship. All involved must be willing to turn all beliefs over to the Holy Spirit and then only go with those that He verifies to be true. When two people will do this and “give errors gladly to correction” they will share their minds as one and virtually enter the kingdom of heaven while still residing on earth, similar to Jesus in the Course who said, “my feet are on the ground and my hands are in Heaven,” UR T 1 B 40ab

“In this world, God’s Son comes closest to himself in a holy relationship.So do the parts of God’s Son gradually join in time, and with each joining is the end of time brought nearer. Each miracle of joining is a mighty herald of eternity.” T-20.V.1

It would seem that all seekers would jump at the opportunity for oneness and sharing, but the Course points out that there is a major obstacle in the way:

Around each entity is built a wall so seeming solid that it looks as if what is inside can never reach without, and what is out can never reach and join with what is locked away within the wall.” T-26.I.2

Then it gives the solution:

“You whose hand is joined with your brother’s have begun to reach beyond the body, but not outside yourself, to reach your shared Identity together.” T-18.VI.10.

“Alone we can do nothing, but together our minds fuse into something whose power is far beyond the power of its separate parts. By not being separate, the Mind of God is established in ours and as ours. This Mind is invincible because it is undivided.” T-8.V.1

“together our minds fuse into something whose power is far beyond the power of its separate parts.” T-8.V.1

As we share this goal, we increase its power to attract the whole Sonship, and to bring it back into the oneness in which it was created.” T-5.II.11

If we have to “bring it back into oneness” this would imply that we are currently not there yet but this is indeed a goal to which we aspire. To achieve that goal involves sharing the mind of God with our brothers and sisters. This is also emphasized in the Course when it stresses that we cannot go home alone but must do all we can to take others with us.

“Together is your joint inheritance remembered and accepted by you both. Alone it is denied to both of you.” T-31.II.11

“How easy is it to offer this miracle to everyone! No one who has received it for himself could find it difficult. For by receiving it, he learned it was not given him alone. Such is the function of a holy relationship; to receive together and give as you received.” T-22.IV.7

It seems that everything connected with salvation and the holy relationship involves a spiritual sharing of the mind of God with the assistance of the Holy Spirit. For most this higher sharing begins by working at their special relationships in hope of turning them to holy relationships. Based on what we have learned from the Course let us see how we can make that happen.

Special relationships are created by seeing one’s loved ones as special, more deserving of our love and attention than others. On the other hand, the Course teaches that God loves all his children equally and does not favor one over another. We are supposed to incorporate this same attitude.

Does this mean we are supposed to dissolve our special relationships? It almost sounds that way in places but it clarifies here:

“I said before that the first change, before dreams disappear, is that your dreams of fear are changed to happy dreams. That is what the Holy Spirit does in the special relationship. He does not destroy it, nor snatch it away from you. But He does use it differently, as a help to make His purpose real to you. The special relationship will remain, not as a source of pain and guilt, but as a source of joy and freedom.” T-18.II.6

“Your special relationship will be a means for undoing guilt in everyone blessed through your holy relationship. It will be a happy dream, and one which you will share with all who come within your sight. Through it, the blessing the Holy Spirit has laid upon it will be extended.” T-18.II.7

So we do not have to end any of our special relationships. Instead, we turn them into holy relationships with the assistance of the Holy Spirit. The Course gives an overall picture of how this is to happen but seems to leave the details up to us. This leaves some wondering how much specialness is allowed in dealing with your spouse, children and other loved ones. Is it wrong to give them birthday and Christmas presents beyond what you would give your neighbor or some guy you do not even know who is homeless? Are you supposed to go to your neighbor’s home and give his kids hugs and love so they feel as special as your own children?

I think we can see that students can take this too far by looking at literal actions that can betaken.

Jesus had a major problem with wrong headed literal interpretation in his day, especially concurring the Sabbath. The commandment said there was to be no work done on the Sabbath and to the religious leaders no work meant no work so they devised hundreds of things that would be considered work that should not be done on the day of rest.

In the eyes of the authorities Jesus was breaking the commandment because he and his disciples did several things they considered work. To this Jesus tried to set them straight by enunciating the general principle which he followed. He told them, “The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath.” Mark 2:27

In other words, man was not made to be a slave to a bunch of silly rules around the Sabbath, but the Sabbath was made to benefit humanity and improve their lives.

We can apply this same principle with relationships. Relationships are not made to be a chain around our necks but to bring us joy and happiness. If we try and make numerous rules about what we cannot do if a relationship is holy then we make the same mistake as those who criticized Jesus. Instead, like Jesus, we must look at the principles to be followed. If we do this the details will take care of themselves.

So, what is the principle behind the Holy Relationship that should guide our thinking?

Basically it is this. We are all children of God and of equal importance in His sight. Each of us must come to the realization that all people everywhere are just as important and deserving of love as those loved ones in your inner circle.

Does this mean that you do not fulfill your responsibilities to those close to you and spend all your resources helping strangers?

No. Each of us has assumed certain responsibilities toward assisting loved ones in the world. If everyone were to not fulfill them the world would be in chaos. The truth is we can fulfill our responsibilities toward loved ones while realizing the equality of all the sons of God and helping others when opportunity presents itself.

If we interpret this equality idea too literally then we would have to criticize Jesus for turning water into wine for a select few hosted by his mother at a wedding. Jesus did not go around to other weddings to make sure they also had wine, yet we know he understood the principle.

The state of mind necessary for the holy relationship is determined more by one’s state of mind than an itemization of actions that need to be taken. When consciousness is in the right place correct actions will naturally follow.

So if one’s attitude is in the right place how does one consummate the holy relationship by sharing the mind of God with another individual?

It is important to understand that this can only be accomplished by two or more people who are willing to be guided by the Holy Spirit rather than the ego. If a loved one is unwilling to accept the Spirit of oneness then the student must look elsewhere until one who is willing to share the mind of God is found.

When one finds the right individuals for the holy relationship then the real work begins. In special relationships no two people can agree on all things. There are always disagreements that separate them. In the holy relationship there are no major disagreements for all potential conflict is solved by the one mind through the Holy Spirit. At the beginning of the holy relationship this will take much effort for no one likes to admit they were wrong in a disagreement. But if the two share with the Spirit together they will resolve the differences and become one. Then as they practice the holy relationship oneness will become natural and they will see through each other’s eyes without effort.

In the beginning of our marriage my wife and I did our best to create a holy relationship but sometimes a pointed disagreement got in the way. To solve this problem we felt that we needed to reconnect with the Holy Spirit through the remembrance of the love of God so when we reached an impasse one of us would suggest that both of us meet at the kitchen table and look in each other’s eyes. Once the focus was established we were to say “I love you” three times each, but it had to be said like you really meant it, not just the words. The strange thing was that by the time we had finished saying it three times the atmosphere completely changed. No longer did we feel any division or anger at each other, but instead we felt a great peace. And strangest of all we often could not even remember what we were arguing about.

Over the years we have had to use this less and less and now it has been a few years since his process was even needed. Now we rarely disagree on anything, except minor things like what to watch on TV and here the problem is immediately solved by me letting her have her way.

Other times, especially in non romantic relationships there will be disagreements even with people who are spiritually sensitive. How do we achieve oneness so the holy relationship may be maintained?

Let us suppose that you have a friend or loved one with whom you are seeking a holy relationship. You have both invited the Holy Spirit into your lives to guide them but you have reached an impasse and just do not agree on a certain point. What do you do?

The answer is quite simple. In prayer or meditation ask God for the Holy Spirit’s help to bring you to oneness.

“The very fact that the Holy Spirit has been asked for anything will ensure a response. ” T-9.II.3

“It is the Holy Spirit’s function to teach you how this oneness (with God) is experienced, what you must do that it can be experienced” T-25.I.6

“To ask the Holy Spirit to decide for you is simply to accept your true inheritance. Does this mean that you cannot say anything without consulting Him? No, indeed! That would hardly be practical, and it is the practical with which this course is most concerned. If you have made it a habit to ask for help when and where you can, you can be confident that wisdom will be given you when you need it.” M-29.5

To move the special relationship to a holy one merely involves bringing in the Holy Spirit as a guide and revealer. If you and your partner disagree then place the two alternatives before the Spirit and ask about them. If you re both sincere as a little child then you will both get the same answer.

For simplicity’s sake it is best to reduce the disagreement to the point where it can be solved with a simple yes or no. Which is the best answer A or B? If A is closest to the truth then both of you will get a yes on that as the Holy Spirit is not divided against itself.

Those in the ego centered on the special relationship can never achieve oneness and unity but if two or more dedicate themselves to following the guidance of the Holy Spirit higher unity and sharing becomes a reality and instead of feeling like you have given something up or lost something with a change of mind, the feeling will be one of gain, completeness, peace and wholeness, or holiness.

Copyright by J J Dewey

Read the Introduction HERE, Read Chapter One HERE. Chapter Two HERE, Chapter Three HERE, Chapter Four HERE, Chapter Five HERE Chapter Six HERE, Chapter Seven HERE, Chapter Eight HERE, Chapter Nine HERE, Chapter Ten HERE, Chapter Eleven HERE, Chapter Twelve HERE, Chapter Thirteen HERE, Chapter Fourteen HERE, Fifteen HERE, Sixteen HERE

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McCall Gathering 2000, Part 5

McCall Gathering 2000, Part 5

There is a lot of truth that the eyes are the window of the soul. Looking into another’s eyes really helps to share the soul energy. The first time I really felt love towards Artie was that moment I looked in the audience and saw her looking at me. Something was transferred through the eyes.

Here’s an example. If a man or woman has a spouse and they’re in love with him/her they wouldn’t dream of saying to a good friend, “Hey you want my spouse for a few days? You can borrow her if you’d like. It’s fine with me. When I get her back I’ll have just as much fun with her as ever.”

But when a man has a secretary and likes her he wouldn’t think a thing about it if he offered her to someone for a few days. She does a good job and gets praise for her work but there is no romantic relationship so sharing her for a few days is fine.

You can’t do that with a romantic partnership. It’s a totally different type of relationship with totally different types of feelings. In the romantic relationship there is just one unit of energy. Because there is just the one unit of energy within the romantic relationship it’s important that you keep that unit within the relationship. When you keep the unit within the relationship then the stability will be there and the soul will be there and the pure love will be there.

If you start seeing imperfections in the other person where, instead of sending 90-100% you begin sending less energy, pretty soon you hate him so much it becomes a negative 50! This romantic energy is totally different from pure spiritual love or friendship and when a person understands that there’s only one unit he can then see why all the master teachers through the ages have taught the importance of commitment in a relationship.

It’s a different type of commitment than a spiritual relationship. In a romantic relationship that which is good is for you two as a unit. In a spiritual relationship the energy is for the good of the whole no matter how big that group may be. So for the group gathered here so everything we do is for the good of the whole. There is plenty of energy here. One person can’t go grab it all for himself or one couple can’t grab it for themselves. It’s a universal energy that’s circulating.

Even though romantic energy is on the astral level it’s still important. Many new agers seem to discount anything astral, even thought many of them are astral bound themselves and think astral energy is spiritual energy. The astral and physical layers of energy play an important function just as do the higher spiritual energies.

Why? Because our evolution starts there. We have seven centers in our body; two in the head center, then we have the throat, the heart, the solar plexus, sacral and the base of the spine. These are lit like candles. The base of the spine is the source of your life energy and it lights the sacral which lights the solar plexus which lights the heart and throat and on up.

You cannot have the higher centers activated and unfolded without having the lower centers lit and unfolded.

Audience: What if when the higher unfold, you close the bottoms?

JJ: Then you create a blockage and it would not work properly. Here’s something I notice a lot among those who practice a lot of negative meditation. By negative meditation I mean one in which the mind becomes empty as compared to a positive meditation that contemplates a seed thought. A lot of such meditators are people that seem to deny their lower energies. A friend of ours who is into it never seems to get angry. I’ve never seen him get passionate about anything. When he speaks about meditation it’s the most boring monologue I’ve ever heard in my life. It’s all about details and not principles. He just about puts me to sleep. He’s a nice guy. I like him personally. His lower centers seem atrophied. He needs to explode with passion or something. (laughter)

You’ll notice the Avatars of the age, the ones who have really changed the world, their lower centers have been very active. Look at Jesus in the Temple. Look at Moses. He was so upset that he killed an Egyptian who was trying to whip a Hebrew slave. That’s how passionate Moses got.

Let’s look at some other great leaders. Alice A Bailey lists Abraham Lincoln as a great avatar. She calls him a racial avatar, one of the greatest we’ve had. When you read about Lincoln you hear that he was very passionate. He felt very passionate about the war and was beside himself with the incompetence of his generals. Then he looked at Grant for leadership. No one wanted him as head general because he drank too much and swore too much. He didn’t have a good reputation. The New York Times castigated him and told Lincoln he should fire him and get rid of him. Has the New York Times ever given good advice?

Lincoln didn’t listen to them. He said Grant had one thing that no general had. When it comes time to fight, he will fight. These other guys could write books on strategy but if cornered they wouldn’t fight. Grant will stand up and fight. Lincoln himself had to fight tooth and nail to get Grant and this led to winning the war.

When you read about Lincoln he was extremely passionate. When things didn’t go right he was very upset. He had his lower centers open and working.

The average person may have the solar plexus open 70% and the heart center open about 30% and the head center open around 10%. If we increase these to 80% and 50% the solar plexus is also continuing to unfold. As a person becomes more and more evolved, eventually his solar plexus is open 100%. So he has more energy circulating in the lower center than the thug does. The thug thinks he has a lot to control but the higher evolved person has even more to control. A lot of people don’t understand that. They think once the higher centers become active the lower are quiescent.

Let us look at the weight lifter. I haven’t worked out using weights since forever (laughter). If we had a weight lifter here he could pick up a 200 pound weight easier than I could pick up a 100 pound weight. That’s because he’s exercised. The person who is developing the higher centers is also developing more control and more power to control.

Even though his lower centers are open 100% with strong sex drive, strong passions, strong feelings and strong intensity, he’s developed the ability to lift those lower weights. So the thug whose solar plexus may be open only 50% has a harder time with that 50% than the disciple has with 100%. But the disciple has more energy in the lower centers to work with. So the people who tell you the lower centers are to be ignored, to be quiescent or to be neutralized, they themselves will usually have problems and will usually end up accomplishing nothing in their life for they ignore the drive and passion that comes from the lower centers.

If you look at the people who have accomplished anything in the service of humanity they’ve all been very passionate people. Look at John Kennedy for instance. He was very intelligent, a Democrat who inspired us with, “Ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country.” Who has this attitude today, Republican or Democrat? Everyone still quotes it but no one believes it. Most people want to know what their country will do for them and to hell what they can do for their country. “What about my Social Security? What about my Medicare?” What about my prescription drugs? Everyone says, “What can my country do for me?”

JFK was very passionate. He didn’t control all of his passions but he is an example of a person who is obviously evolved yet had very intense passions. He’ll probably need to come back in another life to get them all under control and directed more intelligently. As I read about his life I could see that he did control most of his lower passions. He had a problem with some things, especially sex but a lot of that might be attributed to his father’s teachings and example.

If two men agree on everything, you may be sure that one of them is doing the thinking.

Lyndon B. Johnson (1908 – 1973)

First posted June 21, 2004. The Gathering took place June, 2000.

Copyright by J J Dewey

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McCall Gathering 2000, Part 4

McCall Gathering 2000, Part 4

Audience: Back to where you said you could reconnect if you could get rid of the barriers…if you remove them you can see that perfection in each other again. My first question is how do you get some permanence there? If you see perfection for thirty seconds then it’s gone again…is it that triangular energy and the soul is involved?

JJ: Something Artie tried to do, and I posted this on the list before…Contrary to popular belief that we get along perfectly all the time we do have our little arguments now and then. Sometimes it gets pretty intense until one of us thinks it’s gone as far as we want it to go and we need to re-establish the contact. We have a table where we sit down. The one with soul energy drives the other to the table. (laughter) We sit down and look into each other’s eyes and say, “I love you” three times. Usually by the third time it works, unless we’ve had a really heated argument.

Sometimes I say to her, “I love you.” She replies, “I love you” gruffly. I say, “That doesn’t sound like you mean it. Say it like you really mean it.” To make this work you need to say it three times like you really mean it. When we get to the third time sounding like we really mean it, even if we don’t really feel like it what do you think happens?

Audience: It’s a surrender? The barriers are removed?

JJ: Yes, the barriers are removed and we see the Christ in each other again. The funny thing is sometimes we cannot even remember what we were arguing about.

Audience: How do we know this barrier between us and this person is just a barrier and can be removed, say drinking alcohol. I don’t like this person drinking alcohol so I can create that to be a barrier when it’s not. Or it really could be a barrier and a reason to get away from this person. How do I know if it’s a barrier to be removed or an inspiration to be removed?

JJ: If it’s time to move on from that person you may have soul contact and you’ll feel an inner communication that the time has come. If you’re supposed to stay with that person, even though there are a lot of problems you should get a feeling like you’re supposed to work it out. If you feel that feeling the thing to do is to make it as close to soul contact with the other person that you can, to remove the barriers. But if for instance, the person is beyond redemption and you come to the conclusion that the only thing to do is to move on, then move on. Don’t delay, just move on. That will probably be the best thing.

Oftentimes a relationship will be difficult but you have something to learn from that relationship so your soul will want you to stay in it. You’ve gone into that experience and as long as you’re there you might as well learn from it. The thing to do then is to remove the barriers. If the other person refuses to remove barriers with you it’s important that you still remove your personal barriers with him or her. When you remove your barriers your love energy will be very stimulating to him. Sometimes it will make them worse for a period of time. If you send love and it’s not given back the person can actually become very agitated and become more abusive. But don’t let that stop you. Continue to be harmless. Continue to remove your barriers to the soul. Continue to be open. It will either make the person self destruct (laughter) or else he will change. He will not stay the same. He will either change for the better or the worse.

Audience: It gives you a choice point. The person will say I’m not going to change so you know where you stand.

JJ: No matter how perfect your relationship starts out you’re going to have things to work out. You’ll see perfection when you have that falling in love feeling, especially if it’s a fast romance. When this happens the person can do no wrong but eventually you’ll have a lot of data implanted that creates barriers. You need to sit down and remove the barriers. Use the “I love you” thing or whatever but sit down and remove them so you see the perfection in each other.

Audience: So JJ would it be true to say that if I were a perfect person I would be able to love without barriers people on the street and people all around me. I would use discernment so I wouldn’t get in trouble. But my family, my cousins, my sisters and all the people in my life, I would be able to remove the barriers with them and be walking around in love all the time.

JJ: Romantic love and spiritual love are two different things. You have one unit of romantic energy. If you’re in romantic love with two people at the same time each of them gets 50% as you’re trying to share. Spiritual love is different. I can spiritually love everyone here 100% but I can only romantically love with 100% of that energy with one person. If I try to romantically love two people then this 100% is divided. One person may get 60% and the other 40%. Romantic energy is a totally different type of energy. It’s important in romantic relationships to keep the energy focused.

We’ll talk about that more after our next break but before the break let’s do an experiment in the sharing of spiritual love. Each one of us will go to each person in this group. We will say there words:

“I love you through the soul with the pure love of Christ.” Look into that person’s eyes then have the other person say those words back to you. Give that person a hug then move on to another person. Everyone do it with every person in the room. Call the person by name as you say it.

The group does the exercise and then says the Song of the 144,000 together

JJ: It’s nice to focus on the group. None of us are perfect and we all need stimulation once in awhile. Except Xavier, I think he’s perfect. (laughter) I always pick on Xavier. I called him the god of the galaxy awhile back and never did get a response on that. Actually I know one guy who thinks he is the god of the galaxy.

Okay, concerning romantic relationships everyone has one packet of energy. When two people fall madly in love with each other they share that energy close to 100% or maybe 80, 90, 100 and the other person 80 or 90. They share it back and forth. Rarely is it exactly the same but sometimes when they first fall in love it’s close to 100%. When it’s close to 100% they feel really good about each other, especially if it’s approved by their souls and it’s the right thing for them to be doing and if it’s a learning experience, then the energy gets really good, close to 100%.

Then they begin to see faults in each other and drift downward. The woman doesn’t dress right or whatever or prepare his food right or something silly. It’s often the silly things but when you start adding them until you get about a dozen little things you don’t like, it adds up to a big thing. These percentages begin to go down. Once it goes down to 60 or 50 percent this guy then has 40% of his romantic energy just drifting off into open space.

So he’s at work and there’s a cute little secretary over here. He has 40% drifting off. She psychically picks up that’s he’s open for something to happen. So she gets friendly with him and she starts picking up this 40%. She kind of likes him because she doesn’t see all his imperfections that others see because he’s on his best behavior. She doesn’t know all the nasty little things he does so she sends him maybe 80%. He sends her 40 and she sends him 80. All of sudden he’s getting more than he’s sending and he’s a pretty happy man. He’s getting 70 from his wife and 80 from the secretary so he’s getting 100% energy sent to him with excess radiating off.

The wife is sending 70 and only getting 60 from him so she’s got a negative 10. She feels a little empty because she isn’t getting as much energy as she’s sending out. He’s got an extra amount of energy because the secretary is flooding him with 80%. Now he has to either let the energy bounce off and continue to accept the same amount of energy from his wife or maybe absorb some of the energy.

He looks at his secretary. She isn’t always complaining about how he doesn’t pick up his underwear like his wife does so he begins returning the energy. He returns 80% to her and all of a sudden this relationship with the secretary is going really hot and heavy.

This only leaves 20% to send to his wife. Now instead of getting the usual 60% she’s getting only 20% so 50% of her energy is bouncing off and creating an additional vacuum for her. She’s getting the feeling that she’s giving and giving and getting nothing back. Something is wrong. She will suspect that maybe he’s having an affair with someone because of the change in the energy. She’ll feel it.

When people feel this, they have two lines of approach. They might think it is just the imagination and sweep it under the rug thinking they shouldn’t be jealous. They might get over reactive and play detective and spy on him. In this case he’ll get madder than ever feeling she has no faith in him.

He goes to work and the secretary starts looking better all the time so he gives her 90%. She’s getting even more now so she returns the 90%. Now the wife is down to almost nothing and is complaining like crazy about him.

The Wife says, “You don’t love me anymore. There’s somebody else.” She starts driving the guy away now because she’s very upset due to feeling this void in energy. It finally reaches a point where the guy and the secretary have an affair. The guy feels totally revitalized.

The secretary feels revitalized for awhile but then he feels guilty and thinks he should try to patch it up with his wife. He gives her maybe 50% now. The secretary is still giving 90% so about 40% or her energy is going into a void so she begins to feel a vacuum now. She asks, “When are you going to leave your wife?” She starts sounding like a nag to him since she’s feeling a vacuum. This guy is experiencing some turbulence now having problems with both relationships.

He can’t really explain why. He thinks he hadn’t gotten to know the secretary well and is now realizing she’s a nag just like his wife. Most often he’ll wind up ruining both relationships. Because he doesn’t understand the balance of energies he’ll probably repeat the same problem again if he marries the secretary. He may very well meet a new secretary or associate and hear the same complaints that he heard in his previous relationship. This process keeps repeating itself.

Spiritual energy is totally different. It doesn’t matter how many are included. We went around the entire room and everyone felt the spiritual energy that was shared. Did you notice that when you really looked into the other person’s eyes that you felt something go back and forth between you?

First posted June 17, 2004. The Gathering took place June, 2000.

Copyright by J J Dewey

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McCall Gathering 2000, Part 3

McCall Gathering 2000, Part 3

JJ: We have the inner spirit where the truth lies. The soul is basically a doorway between the physical reality and the spirit. The soul doesn’t exist where physical reality doesn’t exist because the soul is the interplay of spirit and matter. Spirit and matter interplaying produce soul. Soul is that energy of interplay. It’s like a doorway, so soul contact is that point in between or as it’s written esoterically it’s the point where land, water and air meet, which is neither wet nor dry. It’s that mysterious point that is a doorway between the physical reality and the spiritual reality.

To get to the spirit you have several layers to go through. What we need to do as a group is to remove these layers in all of us. If we could remove these layers we could make a spiritual contact, one that is so valid that we would all realize a contact has been made and a spiritual flow has been established.

The spirit doesn’t actually know anything. It’s an inner consciousness that’s beyond form and all knowledge is connected with form. If you think of anything you know, it’s connected with form. Your car has so many horsepower. If your car had no form, horsepower would be meaningless. Our car is gold in color but if we had no form, gold would be meaningless.

What the spirit can do is to recognize truth. It recognizes it rather than having a mind that holds all the truth so to speak. It’s an illusion that all truth is within because there is no truth within. All that is within is the ability to recognize truth. The truth is really without.

Audience: How can that be? If the truth isn’t within me how can I recognize it?

JJ: Because spirit has the ability to recognize truth because spirit interplays through soul with matter and it recognizes all things transpiring in all worlds.

Audience: So truth would have to be presented to me then for me to be able to recognize it.

JJ: Right but you can present it to yourself using imagination, visualization, reading books, discussing ideas. Have you ever been searching for something then something just hits you? “Yes! Why didn’t I think of that before? That is just so true.’ It just hits you. Has anybody had that happen? We’ve all had that happen at least a few times. That’s because you remove the walls, at least temporarily. When the wall is removed, that truth is run by the spirit and when it’s run by the spirit, the spirit vibrates. When it vibrates you get that feeling, ‘Yes! I can see it. I just know that that’s true!’ There may be no way to prove it even using normal logic but when it’s presented to you it just seems so right.

Even in this truth there is sometimes some illusion. Let’s say you’re progressing from a certain point and this point is pretty much as close to truth as you can get. When you’re at the first point you have a decision to go this direction or that direction or another direction. (Pointing at blackboard) This still has some illusion in it but it’s the right direction. There are still things that aren’t 100% true because you have a distance to go to get to the real truth. But that decision takes you into a completely wrong area and if you make that decision you’ll need to go that way then come back and start all over. If you go other ways, you’ll need to come back and eventually wind up at this point. (JJ: drawing on board)

When these three directions are run by the spirit, through the soul, the spirit and your accountability, you may receive a vibration. The vibration doesn’t mean a decision is 100% true but it means you’re headed the direction to the truth.

An acquaintance, a while back, told me he joined the Catholic Church and he just felt 100% sure that was the right thing for him to do. He felt a very strong presence and he just knew he was supposed to join the Church. For him there was something in the Catholic Church that he was supposed to learn. That thing in the church that he had to learn was a step to take him to the goal. He probably had a couple more steps first.

His soul may have told him that but if one of us had the same impression we’d think, ‘Join the Catholic Church? The church has all sorts of wrong things in it and I don’t believe in confession or transubstantiation or any of those things.’ The soul or the spirit may not believe in it either but for him it told him it was the right direction to head in. Then, after he learns what he was supposed to, it is quite possible his soul will tell him to leave the church and move on.

Your soul will confirm to you if you’re either headed in the direction of the truth or going to a point of truth. It vibrates when the truth is being approached.

My book, The Immortal, is presented as a combination of fact and fiction. A lot of people write to me and say that they know the book is 100% true because it registers with their soul. The book is not 100% true. The principles in it are true. The direction of the book takes people in the direction of a truth. Their soul will vibrate and they’ll feel that vibration and misinterpret it and believe it’s 100% true. They don’t care what I tell them. I’ve had a guy chew me out for saying it’s a combination of fact and fiction. People have chastised me for that! They can’t understand why if there is anything in the book that is not true, why did they receive the vibration of truth.

This is why. It’s because it takes them from here to here. (drawing on board) Once they are here they can see the next step. That’s why many people feel the spirit going through the soul saying “yes”.

What we want to do is to remove the barriers because this is what happens. Suppose you have these three decisions. These two take you way off the path but this one takes you in the best direction. You have three decisions. One takes you toward spiritual closeness. These others take you away from Spirit. The wrong direction is often something you really want to be true. Let’s use relationships for an example because it’s something we can all relate to. We’ve all been through relationships.

You meet a person, very intelligent, attractive and funny. Let’s say you want to have kids and this person doesn’t want to have kids. This person is Catholic and you’re an atheist. That would create a lot of problems. But she’s really attractive and now you have this decision. He meets another person who is very mental in a lot of ways. You agree a lot philosophically. This person isn’t very attractive but would be an interesting person to spend time with.

This last person is really the best choice because the philosophy matches up. The others are attractive. This one isn’t a real knockout but is a good stable person who will pay the bills and you can see eye to eye on most things.

So there are three choices to decide between. The astral based person will generally go with the attractive person because he has a lot of desire. ‘So what if she doesn’t want to have kids. I’ll change my mind because she’s so attractive. It’s not logical but I’ll figure out the logic when the time comes.’ He has this tremendous pull to make this wrong decision. Later he may realize the other person was the person the soul really wanted for him but now he doesn’t want to hear that because he’s really attracted to this person. In this situation he overrides the soul and listens to the feelings. Soon he feels so great that he convinces himself it is fate to follow his feelings.

This really happens. Relationships are so difficult because the falling in love feeling borders on the soul energy. A lot of people believe there is one special person out there for them. They think they met the person because they feel love but that’s an illusion because you can do that with any other person in the world if you let down all the barriers between you.

You fall in love with a person because you’re attracted to him. That attractiveness brings down the barriers. It isn’t that you make the contact then the barriers come down but it’s that the barriers come down then you make the contact.

If you’re person A and you’re working with person B as friends, why don’t you fall in love with this person? Maybe you don’t like the way she dresses. Maybe you don’t like her visible features. These are all barriers between you and the other person’s soul. If these barriers were to be removed you could look at that person and fall in love.

Audience: Can you remove barriers at will?

JJ: Yes you can remove the barriers.

Audience: But I can’t remove your barriers, right?

JJ: No, you have to remove your own. If you remove your own but the other guy doesn’t, you’re still blocked from full sharing.

Audience: But if I were to remove my barriers would he fall in love with me because he could see me?

JJ: No, if you remove your barriers, you’re likely to fall in love with him but he won’t necessarily fall in love with you.

Audience: If I removed my barriers I would fall in love with him? Oh I get it. Then I’d have soul contact.

JJ: Yes. You’d open your soul to him but there wouldn’t be an interplay. When you have two people like two atoms and they both remove the barriers then there is free interplay. If only one person removes the barriers there is energy going one direction but not the other. This person has an attraction and the other person tries to avoid it. If the two people were to remove barriers instantly the soul energy can flow.

To trigger the romantic energy the astral needs to be let in. Between two people like us in this room, if we remove the barriers the spiritual energy can flow. A lot of people don’t want to fall in romantic love with everyone but they do want to fall into spiritual love with others.

If you’re opposite polarities and remove the barriers and you let the romantic energy flow that can happen. If you don’t want romantic energy to flow, if it’s dedicated to one person, then the spiritual energy can still flow.

Different kinds of barriers need to be removed. What are the barriers?

Audience: We’re talking about barriers to the soul?

JJ: We’re listing barriers to soul contact.

Audience: Beliefs.

JJ: Conditioning is part of that. Belief is okay if there is truth within it, right?

Audience: Belief is still part of personality.

Audience: Judgment.

JJ: There are two categories of judgment. There is a positive type of judgment and a negative. The negative judgment is what I call a limiting type of judgment. A father says to his son, ‘you’re never going to amount to anything.’ That’s a limiting type of judgment because it has a bad effect on him. The positive type of judgment is what we call discernment. We use discernment to judge the right path to take which is a positive use. The negative type of judgment is to put a person in a box because of who you think he is.

Another type of judgment is like and dislike. For instance, you may not like a person’s perfume. That type of like and dislike as a means to make a choice is rather crazy as well. If that means you don’t like the person and you’re not going to gain anything from them then that judgment is standing in your way.

Let’s look at what happens when two people really do fall in love. Oftentimes two strangers will meet and all of a sudden chemistry will strike. The guy may be a serial ax murderer or something but this poor little gal doesn’t know that. He comes off with all kinds of charm so she lets down her barriers. The ax murderer lets down his barriers and they’re both being extremely charming. Neither one of them are making any negative judgments about the other. When they look at each other what do they see? They see perfection.

When two people look at each other and see perfection, they will instantly fall in love. In that moment when they see perfection the spiritual flow will circulate. If they are opposite polarities centered in the astral then the spiritual energy will bring romantic love with it. If they’re committed to someone else they’ll just have a spiritual experience.

It reminds me of when Artie and I fell in love. I was teaching a class and was going to talk on a certain subject. I don’t remember what it was and I looked at the audience and there she was looking at me. She looked at me with such anticipation in her eyes like she thought I was the most perfect person in the world.

I had my speech outlined but I thought it wasn’t good enough for what she expected. So I trashed my prearranged subject and talked about the first thing that cane into my head. I spoke about divine carelessness. It was the best class I’d ever given in my life. She really pulled it out of me. We pretty much fell in love that instant I looked in her eyes because she saw perfection in me. When she saw perfection in me, what I was going to give her wasn’t perfect so I threw it out and gave her something much closer to perfection.

Audience: Isn’t that infatuation though?

JJ: Infatuation is more astral. When there is soul energy involved, you’re contacting a real energy. This can even happen with an ax murderer. What happens is real because you see perfection in that person in that instant and that person saw perfection in you. When that happens there can be a tremendous sharing. You don’t have to be perfect for it to happen but it is a real thing. What creates infatuation is like when a rock star comes into town. It’s usually a one way thing. The rock star comes to town and you idolize him and you’d go to the end of the world to get his attention.

But it’s different with two people touching the soul, they’re very imperfect people but they see perfection within each other. This causes the circulation of energy and is real. They may interpret it wrongly. They may think each other is perfect in everything they do. As they get to know each other they might learn one of them only changes his socks once a week or doesn’t use deodorant. These are barriers that get in the way. By the time they have a list of about a dozen flaws they’ll wonder what they ever saw in the other person. But they fell in love because for that one instant, they saw perfection. But when you get to the point where you have these flaws tabulated and he’s got twelve things wrong and she has twelve things wrong, these twelve things are now barriers so there is no soul contact and no circulation of energy. They can’t understand why in the world they ever felt the way they did and believe they can never feel that way again.

But they could. All they have to do is to forget. To negate these twelve things they don’t like all they have to do is look at each other again, see the perfection within and they’ll fall in love all over again. It can happen in thirty seconds if they’re willing to drop those barriers, those twelve little things.

He watches football too much. Forget that he watches football. She goes away for the day and doesn’t have dinner ready. She doesn’t pay any attention to me. This is a barrier. Drop all these barriers and only see the perfection and instantly the soul energies interplay all over again just like they just fell in love.

Audience: So when I need him and I think I see perfection in him how do I know I’m not mentally constructing…

Audience: I’d like to say something before you ask that question. I may be able to answer that question. Let’s go back to Artie in the class, then the pop star and his comment about infatuation. Infatuation to me is a mental construct that says, ‘This person has something that I think they have. I’m open and I’ve put them in a certain position so that position is an infatuation. It’s registered and picked up or whatever happens but to me what we’re talking about is a mental construct of what I want that person to be. They’re not that. I want this ax killer to be something else. Where we get stuck is seeing perfection is because I have a mental construct about it. So I want it, that’s the thing I want.

JJ: Here’s me, here’s Artie and here’s our soul (writing on board). All souls are one in the ultimate reality. If we saw perfection in each other we could have a circulation of soul energy. That would feel really great even if we were totally wrong for each other. The soul will also recognize when you are right for each other. If you are right for each other it will add an additional down flow of energy to create a triangle of energy which is more powerful still. When you have the triangle circulating you’ll have the feeling that this is right. When you have the energy circulating between you two you’ll have a great feeling but something may feel not quite right about it.

Audience: And it ends. Which is the mental construct.

JJ: Before I got married I met this gal who I was really attracted to. When we dated there were no barriers and there was great energy shared. We both felt really wonderful in each other’s presence. I kept having this nagging feeling that I wasn’t supposed to marry her and it wouldn’t go away. It bothered her too. She came to me one day and said, “I prayed about you and God told me that I’m not supposed to marry you.” I told her, “I’ve known that all along but I’ve been trying to ignore it.” She got a real definite answer from her soul. She gave me a wake up call and I went along with it.

Later, in my relationship with Artie, the energy circulates in a triangle. There is a feeling that is more powerful still and it’s amplified. The energy circulates and you know that person is right for you.

First posted June 13, 2004. The Gathering took place June, 2000.

Copyright by J J Dewey

Index for Original Archives

Index for Recent Posts

Easy Access to All the Writings

For Free Book go HERE and other books HERE

JJ’s Amazon page HERE